Instrumented soccer

After talking with one of the dads on Nathaniel’s team, I decided to start playing soccer again, this time in the PAASL Men’s B division. (I played a single season of AYSO Adult League in fall of 2011, but work got a bit too busy. Before that there’s an 18 year hiatus.) For running and lifting, various Android apps—CardioTrainer and Strong Log—have given me enough feedback data to adjust training plans, but for soccer, it’s a bit awkward to carry a phone on your shirt sleeve. Since I didn’t want to play without some form of instrumentation, I began to research.

The only single player system for soccer I’ve found is Adidas miCoach, which consists of a pod that slips into a recess under the insole of your left boot, a receiver, a synchronization program, and a web application which provides the reporting. I chose the Mac/PC package, where the receiver is a USB device, to use with my laptop. Since I hadn’t played in a while, I was curious to see what the summary was. When I got home, I ran the sync app, and logged into the miCoach site. The summary panel from my first game, which includes the warmup, is below:

miCoach summary, 2013-06-09

miCoach summary, 2013-06-09

Even these five numbers were illuminating: distance travelled, at just under 4 miles, was comfortable, given my regular runs. But I don’t do a lot of speed work, and the demonstrations and touches I perform with Ben’s team are low intensity, and the second half—except for one or two runs—was much more of a challenge in terms of summoning speed. (It feels like a brief incantation is required at my age. Twenty years ago speed was always available…) I’ll make sure to add more accelerations when I’m out on the roads, or just suck it up and run some wind sprints.

miCoach gives more detailed results than that summary; I’ll show a few of these in future posts. No measurements this weekend, as I’m attending the Class E coaching clinic.