We have asked Glen Viks, the head coach of the national U21 team in Estonia, what he thinks are the challenges of a small judo nation to be competitive and what benefits he has using Athlete Analyzer Judo for his team. This is part one in a series of user stories. Stay tuned for more stories to be shared.
I am responsible for the Estonian U-21 national team. Estonia is a small country and it is hard to find large number of good judo players on higher levels. Almost all the other good and best judo countries have one thing in common. There are lots of high level judokas to train with. To be the best you have train with the best. For this reason it’s most essential for us to train abroad. This of course is not always possible, due to insufficient funds, or sometimes school exams for cadets and juniors. So to do the work at home and still compete with the best, we need to use the high class systems designed and developed for judo.
We have been using AAJ for couple of years now and I mainly use two of AAJ´s features. First is the video analyzing section. At the start it took some time for athletes to use it in the right way. My main focus was to teach them that it is most important to describe situations where there is “no score”. It is important to understand that many of the graphs shown in the video analyzing section displays the athletes’ weaknesses. In my opinion, it’s much harder to train their best strengths to be even better. It’s much easier to train the weaknesses to be less weak and it also gives more effect on the performance on the tatami.
Secondly I use the feature that connects Polar account to AAJ. It gives the coach a good understanding what happens during the trainings. Other than the information of judoka’s tiredness, recovering, power etc, there is one interesting psychological effect that using this system has. The coach has the eyes on everything an athlete does. So when an athlete understands he or she is monitored they tend to train harder and are less likely to give up too easily.
Head Coach, Estonian U21 Team