Smash Factor Power Hitting Technology. The people at Force Train Better have long advocated the use of technology and baseline tracking modules as part of the development of a player’s power-hitting game. In fact, we have been using this sort of technology for a number of years, mainly at the Julian Wood Power Hitting Academy in London, England.
We at Force Train Better are currently conducting a study of the effects of bat swing speeds on performance out-put levels. By performance output levels we refer mainly to the team and individual scores. The study is being carried out during the current Big Bash Series being held in Australia. The study involves a ball by ball analysis of each innings and centers around a thing called “Power Maximization Ratio” (PMR). Using statistics like ball delivery speeds and shot travel time within a strict range of limitations we are able to assess or calculate the “Potential Score Outcome” on a ball by ball basis. This is done by applying various mathematical formulas and adjusting bat swing speed levels within the parameters of any given shot and the outcome of any given shot. As an example, a player might hit a shot that carries around 65 meters in the air and is caught with 3 meters of the boundary. By factoring in a 10% faster bat swing speed we can calculate the increase in ball carry distance and ball trajectory. In all cases, the outcome should have been six runs instead of zero runs and the fall of a wicket.
The outputs that we are generating are quite staggering. Individuals and teams at the elite Big Bash Level should be operating at around 92% to 100% PMR. Instead, to date, “all teams” fall way below this as all are within a PMR level of 65% to 80%.
This effectively means that individual and teams scores are way below what they could be. In the match between the Renegades and the Thunder played on the 19th of December the Thunder won the match with a score of 171 and a PMR of 79% against the Renegades 167 PMR 76%. In terms of PMR levels, these are on the high side of games surveyed to date. Note also that PMR levels for Women’s teams (62%) are a lot lower than Men’s teams and (based on ground studies) Club PMR’s are as low as 48%. Studies done at junior matches show PMR levels of 40%.
The other interesting statistic that is evolving within the study is the relationship between bat swing speeds and footwork. Statistics show a direct correlation between attacking shots played, attacking shot effectivity and balance. In 90% of cases where a batter is off balance or not correctly founded via the feet, attacking shots are ineffective. Outputs obtained in our studies indicate that this is happening more often than it should at all levels of the game.
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With the advent of technology in the form of sensor-based tracking devices such as Smash Factor, Bat Sense and others, coaches at the elite level now have access to a wide range of data and key statistical outputs that allows them to assess player performance levels in ways never before seen in cricket. They also have access to people like Julian Wood and his Australian prodigy James Baverstock who have the programs, experience, know-how, and skill set to teach coaches how to analyze data correctly and to advise them on the appropriate training programs to use in the development of high performing teams and individual players.
So while it is good to have the technology you also have to have the right people, the right programs and the right equipment at hand to fully benefit from it.
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