The concept of sports intelligence has been increasingly studied by specialists in the sports world over the years. The mental aspect of the performance of athletes is believed to be of vital importance, regardless of their level and goals. Read on to learn more about sports intelligence.
What is sports intelligence?
Sports intelligence is the ability to use physical skills, mental skills, and strategic analysis to optimize the athlete’s performance. It can be developed through training, competitions and sports psychology sessions. We can identify 7 types of intelligence associated with sports intelligence.
Physical intelligence refers to the ability to produce action efficiently. It is based on the coordination of movements and a set of criteria related to physical performance, such as:
- Motor skills;
Technically intelligent athlete masters the execution of movements specific to their discipline. This involves understanding the biomechanics of movement. Technical intelligence is essential to progress, avoid injury and save effort.
Athletes with tactical intelligence can develop an effective plan of action to achieve a specific goal. This plan can be adjusted based on the opponent’s performance, current outcome, physical condition, etc.
Strategic intelligence refers to the ability to prepare strategies to achieve a medium or long-term goal. It is often developed by sports leaders and coaches, namely:
- Investment in youth to ensure succession and a future level of performance of the senior team in the future;
- Planning of physical preparation courses.
Emotional intelligence is about controlling emotions and redirecting them to improve sports performance.
An emotionally intelligent athlete develops mental qualities and personal values that enable him to achieve his goals and overcome the obstacles he may encounter:
- Stress management;
- Controlling negative emotions;
Emotional intelligence helps the athlete to:
- Don’t be obsessed with sports;
- Maintain a healthy lifestyle (balanced diet, restful sleep, etc.).
An athlete with good emotional intelligence develops good relationships with teammates, coaches, medical staff, etc. This is expressed in a positive attitude toward others, an ability to listen to them and to establish good interpersonal relationships. This is expressed by a positive attitude toward others, an ability to listen to them and to establish good interpersonal relationships.
Emotional intelligence helps to understand the opponent’s behaviour, anticipate his reaction and take advantage of this information.
Collective intelligence refers to the ability of a team to work together effectively to achieve a common goal. It involves combining individual skills, knowledge and experience to create a powerful group dynamic. Collective intelligence can be developed through communication as well as by establishing a strong team culture and exemplary leadership.
Analytical intelligence consists of analyzing the performance of athletes to establish an adapted training plan and an effective strategy during competitions. It uses specific software for video and data analysis. Fitness enthusiasts can also use connected watches and mobile apps to measure their performance.
Here are some of the data that are the subject of the sports analysis:
- Distance travelled;
- Travel speed;
- Areas covered by the player represented by the heatmap;
- Passing success rate (in team sports);
- Number of attempts towards the goal;
- Motion Modelling;
- Heart rate monitoring;
- Maximum amount of oxygen that the body uses per unit of time (VO2 max);
- Calories burned;
- Opposing Team Tactics and Disposition;
Analytical intelligence in the sports context has gained new momentum with the development of artificial intelligence (AI) to refine the analysis of performance indicators and predict future athlete performance.
Is it possible to measure one’s sports intelligence?
There are different ways to measure sports intelligence. However, it is important to note that this notion remains quite complex to identify precisely because sports intelligence is a combination of several factors (emotional, physical, technical, tactical, etc.).
For example, physical intelligence can be measured through physical effort tests. Technical intelligence can be measured through observation and assessment of cognitive skills through the use of valid and reliable psychometric tests. Emotional intelligence in sports can be measured through psychometric tests that assess the athlete’s ability to manage emotions, communicate effectively, work as a team, and adapt to constantly changing situations.
Why is it essential to measure your sports intelligence?
Set achievable goals
Whether it is for a professional or an amateur athlete, the measurement of sports intelligence makes it possible to set achievable objectives according to the physical and mental capacity of the athlete.
Identify the sport’s profile
Sports intelligence is useful in identifying the profile of young athletes to direct them to disciplines in which they can excel. In team sports, sports intelligence tests help coaches determine the appropriate position for each player (for example, a defender, a midfielder, or a forward on a soccer team).
Measuring sports intelligence helps identify players who have the potential to become leaders on their team. It can also help coaches recruit players who are best suited to their style of play and goals.
Monitor the Evolution of Collective and Individual Performance
The measurement of sports intelligence makes it possible to follow the evolution of athlete and team performance over time. It identifies strengths, limiting factors and areas for improvement. This can help to develop specific training programs.
Strengthen team cohesion
Sports intelligence indicators help to implement actions that can
- Strengthen the sense of belonging to the group;
- Stimulate communication and the exchange of experiences and skills;
- Promote mutual understanding within a team;
Prepare yourself mentally
A psychologist can use the athlete’s sports intelligence to help him or her manage stress at sporting events and counteract the pressure from the club, the public and the media.
How to measure your sports intelligence?
Psychometric tests are considered among the most effective tools for measuring sports intelligence. With over 25 years of experience in designing cognitive, emotional and personal assessment tests, HRID offers the ID-Sport, ID-Personality and ID-cognitive tests. Each of these tests measures one of the major aspects of sports intelligence. These tests can be used for both individual and team sports, they help you to:
- Determine the sport’s profile of a team or a player;
- Determine an athlete’s ability to integrate into a team;
- Assessing the athlete’s perceptual competence;
- Assess motivation and personal factors impacting athletic performance;