Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Helena Jansson tells about future of sport statistics in Orienteering (updated)

Helena Jansson is a top runner in modern Orienteering. She has dozens of medals from top international competitions (incl. 2x WOC golds and 3x EOC golds). Winner of overall World Cup-2011 tells her opinion about sport statistics in Orienteering.

Helena! You know that important step in sport development is statistical arrangement. Let me say some examples in other sports:

1) What is a percentage of Ole Einar Bjorndalens shooting in standing and prone position?
2) How many knock-out victories has Vladimir Klichko?
3) How many World Cup victories has Marit Bjoergen?
4) Who is the best tennis player against Roger Federer?
5) What is the fastest serve speeds of Maria Sharapova?
6) Who has best rebounds score in the basketball team Los Angeles Lakers? (see nice cite with NBA statistics)

Such kind of statistic information is VERY important for funs, TV-speakers, media (and for coaches as well).

1. In your opinion, what is the current situation with such statistical arrangement in Orienteering?
2. What kind of indicators, statistical aggregates, profile characteristics can we use in Orienteering (to make in our sport better information content)?

"1. I haven’t really thought about this at all before I got the question from you, but I guess that when you compare us to other sports, we lack statistics. I’m not that interested in it, but for example when it comes to orienteering growing as a TV-sport, it is important to have good "runner-profiles" (such as those World of O have), in order to make the job for TV-commentators easier (and in order for them to be more accurate!)

2. For me as a runner, I guess the most interesting would be if there would be easy ways to find out about whether I have a strength or a weakness in some particular part of my performance (compare to lying/standing shooting in biathlon). GPS/2Drerun/quickroute surely provides ways for me to analyse this, but it would also be interesting to have ways to compare it over time (my own progress), and to other runners".

Many thanks for your answers! It is interesting to know your opinion about one more extra-question:
3. I am pretty skeptical about IOF efforts in this direction. I am interested to start crowd-funding initiative for creating of new statistical/performance analysis tools in Orienteering (I am thinking about Jan Kocbach like a main specialist) . What do you think about perspectives of such initiative?

"3. Generally I think all initiatives that aim to help develop this sport that I love so much are most welcome, and this could be a part of that. I can’t really say who should be responsible and in what way. For me this is a small piece of a large puzzle, and it is important only as part of a larger picture. I can’t say that I think this is a top-priority when it comes to developing orienteering. There are many other aspects of our sport that also need improvement, but as I said- initiatives that are meant to make improvements are usually a good thing!"

Thank you very much for your opinion. I agree that there are a lot of important things to do in our sport, and high-quality sport statistics is just one step to improvement. 

P.S. Photo is from World of O: Helena got amazing victory at very challenged terrain (Middle, WOC-2011, France).


Your opinion is important to set up priorities! Please, mark one or more points from list:
- Relay performance/skills
- Complete/detailed results overview, including historical statistics/ranking
- Statistics of different legs types 
- Pacing/speed analysis
- Safety/mistakes analysis 

Explanations and comments of these points you can read in the post Leonid Novikov tells about future of sport statistics in Orienteering.

Click button "ГОЛОСОВАТЬ" to VOTE.

1 comment:

  1. Interviews of one of the key persons in management of Kalevan Rasti (Antti Harju) and Halden Skiklubb (Bjørn Axel Gran) are coming this week.