My PhD research in Badminton
Current title: Maturity-based Badminton Development Framework and Methodology.
The goal of my research is to justify and optimise the complete development framework, I have built in the past 12 years during my years in Denmark and Germany. Understanding that building a proper development framework requires significant research and access to top supervisors, I decided that the only way is to move to the UK and pursue this at Loughborough University.
The research observes the complete development of a player, starting from a very early age until becoming a World top player. It questions everything along the development road and recursively looks for topics that need to be implemented as early as possible in order to avoid a future problem or issue.
Each layer gives a separate approach and clarity on how to develop the players on the topic through time. Observing a few of those layers at the same time produces a lot of clear pathways compared to using only one layer.
The outcome I am looking for at the end of the research is to produce the materials as well as to create the required software which will accelerate the whole framework as well as allow multiple users to work on the same groups/athletes.
Physiological (or biological) maturation
Physiological maturation (also referred to as biological) observes the progression to a mature individual (an adult). I am observing its relation to psychological maturation, the different application methods to measure it adequately on the court and how it affects one's ability to progress further into sports. My present theory is to develop a maturational lense that could allow us to understand the present physiological capacity of an athlete and the projected one in the future. In different studies in football and in tennis, there has been found a correlation with how the coaches select athletes, especially their tendency to choose an early maturer compared to a late mature.
<<< Dr Sean Cumming | Biological Maturation in Youth Sports: Breaking Biases
Psychological maturation is related to many additional factors, not only physiological development. Early maturers face different psychological challenges compared to late ones. The factors of decision making in adolescents could be severely impacted based on their biological maturation.
My main aim is to understand the differences and the factors influencing those, so we can build adequate testing models which could help coaches to coach better the early and late maturers.
Check out: Neural and psychological maturation of decision-making in adolescence and young adulthood.
The bio-banding concept helps to group individuals based on their growth and biological maturation, instead of their chronological age. The bio-bands (showed at the left as % of the Peak Height Velocity) are used to identify everyone within the same band and group them assuming they are within a similar risk.
My aim is to develop a coaching system to adapt to the load and intensity the athletes are exposed to and therefore minimise the risk without compromising their future development.
Check out: Bio-banding in Sport: Applications to Competition, Talent Identification, and Strength and Conditioning of Youth Athletes
Coaching (methods & frameworks)
Coaching methods in relation to maturation (both physiological and psychological) could be adapted to apply the maturation lenses and also help recognise and assess the impact of the environment the athletes and coaches are in.
My aim is to adapt the existing frameworks and methods to apply the additional changes, analyse the environment and understand how to successfully lead the athletes through the desired change.
Check out: Coach behaviour analysis: Being a Coaching, Developing coach Behaviour
The science of biomechanics helps us understand any movement. This understanding should help us improve, fix or completely change this movement if necessary.
In many sports, biomechanics has been there for many years bringing a huge understanding of how to perform better (for example the weightlifting biomechanics database is huge!). This is not the case (yet) for badminton. We are still missing analysis of many of the badminton strokes, especially in specific tactical situations.
My aim here is to develop a core biomechanics model to analyse and teach properly technical movements both movement on-court (known as footwork) and any type of badminton stroke.
<<< Check out: Prof Mark King | Speed and Accuracy in the Badminton Jump Smash
Understanding biological maturation allows us to tailor the timing of teaching physical skills related to general physical development, as well as badminton specific skills.
The goal here is to adapt the already existing Long-term Development Frameworks to the additional factors, unique to our sport. From our side, we can avoid injuries, achieve greater excellency at an earlier stage (not age) and yes be faster, stronger, agile, flexible and more!
Check out: Long-Term Athlete Development, with Rhodri Lloyd | NSCA.com
Different compared to psychological maturation, psychological development focuses on the mental skills relevant to the specific psychological maturation and how those mental skills should be thought by the coaches.
The athlete's environment plays a huge role in psychological development. My main goal is to build the appropriate tools for the coaches or the managers to assess, develop or change their current situation.
Check out: What gives Elite Athletes the Edge? | Janne Mortensen | TEDxOdense
Planning & Periodisation
Badminton could be considered one of the most complex sports and in my opinion the hardest to design a sensible and real planning and periodisation. Probably this is why I love this topic so much.
My aim is to develop an advanced non-linear approach fitting the bio-banding conception with integratable mental, physical, technical and technical elements. I want to be able to simplify it afterwards and deliver structured programmes which coaches can simply, adapt and make work with their athletes in their environment.
Check out: CURRENT CONCEPTS IN PERIODIZATION OF STRENGTH AND CONDITIONING FOR THE SPORTS PHYSICAL THERAPIST
Business methodology and strategy
Badminton is not a professional sport similarly to tennis, football or basketball. Because of this, Federations and Associations have different funding approaches and there are no clear business methods and strategies available for the people running a Badminton Club or a private Academy.
My aim is to deliver the most suitable business methods and strategies directly applicable to Badminton organisations in different external environments.
Check out: A Framework for the Analysis of Strategy in Nonprofit Sport Organizations