Using Technology to Enhance Grassroots Football

Topics: The Football Association, Wembley Stadium, FA Cup Pages: 24 (8352 words) Published: May 2, 2013
Using Technology To Enhance Grassroots Football Coaching|
Research Focus Dissertation|
David Lowe|

This work is original and has not been previously submitted in support of any other course or qualification.|

1 Introduction and background3
1.1 Background3
1.2 Aim and objective4
1.3 Contribution5
1.4 Thesis Organisation5
2 Literature Review6
2.1 Literature review conclusion10
3 Research methodology10
3.1 Application selection10
Application requirements11
3.2 Procedure13
4 Result Analysis14
4.1 background and experience of coaches and students in case study14
4.2 pre-test analysis14
4.3 Observational analysis20
4.4 Post-test analysis20
4.5 Ease of use20
4.6 Interest among learners23
4.7 Interest among coaches26
4.8 Pre-test, post-test comparison26
4.9 FA Support27
4.10 Results29
5 Conclusion29


In recent years there has been a significant increase in the use of technology in sports. Cricket, tennis and rugby have all integrated the new technologies. Football is finally accepting technology in the sport with goal line technology being tested as from the 2013/2014 season. This leads to the question is it only with the mainstream televised football, or is the FA failing to capitalise on using technology to aid in other aspects of the sport in the training and education of the participants and in particular youth training. This report looks at the idea that the Football Association (FA), could promote the use of software applications in their training courses. We will aim to prove that technology does enhance training sessions, children respond better to interactive tools, the role of a coach can be assisted by the use of an application and that there is a role for technology in FA coaching courses. We will aim to prove this with a case study conducted with volunteer coach’s’ to assess if the use of technology in a session enhances the coaches or athletes experience. This will be supported by literary research covering current coaching methods, the use of technology in education, previous test results and coaching theories.


The author would like to thank Vauxhall Motors Football Club and all of their coaches at the youth academy. A big thank you also to Eastham Rangers Football Club. Without their time and commitment this would not have been possible.

1 Introduction and background

1.1 Background
As it stands at the moment a grassroots football coach is always writing down plans on pieces of paper. There are many downfalls to this practice including lack of organised, planned sessions and lack of interest from the children. Computers and technology have been proven effective in computer assisted instruction, but there is little evidence to support they can be an effective tool of coaching sport. The theory is, more interest will be shown towards the session plans if these can be presented interactively via an android application. Initial research showed that the English FA have no applications to go along with their training courses and suggest using coloured cones and chalk boards to engross the children’s attention. We searched into the app market to see if there was already suitable apps on the market and we propose to research deeper, including apps designed for other sports. At present there are over 20,000 FA qualified coaches. In order to gain the FA coaching qualifications potential coaches must take a 5 day course. The course covers first aid, child protection, administration, the psychological approach used to coach children and the best practice to get them interacting with the coach and each other. Throughout the whole course the subject of using technology isn’t even broached. This leads the writer to ask, could technology be used as an aid to enhance the new coach? We will look into whether untrained coaches...

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