Moving from Loughborough which is a small market town to Durham which has a perfect balance of student life, business and the countryside has made a nice change.
Everything is only a stone’s throw away. With Newcastle, only ten minutes away on the train we are on the door step to the heart of the North East.
We’ve also grown to appreciate that when you’re looking at a prospective workplace it’s important to look beyond the office to the environment you’ll be living in.
We’ve already visited different parts of the region including Cauldron’s Snout and High Force. Both are waterfalls high up in the Pennines and have we have also learned much about the history of tyneside at the Discovery Museum in Newcastle.
On our placement, we are in a real-life working environment. We are based at the Durham University Sports and Wellbeing Centre (Formerly Maiden Castle). Not only are we learning key performance analysis skills including the use of software such as NacSport but also getting a glimpse into different working environments, working to the demands of coaches under time constraints and developing an understanding of how we each work best. Ellen has led the analysis for Durham University Hockey teams and Tom has worked closely with Durham University Rugby. This has included videoing of games using AP capture system, coding games using detailed code windows, presentation and feedback of match statistics and supporting/preparing for team preview meetings.
Recently, we have both been creating new code windows in order to present in detailed statistics to coaches around hockey short corners and football set pieces. At weekends we also perform video analysis and individual player coding for premiership women’s rugby side Darlington Mowden Park Sharks.
Our placement has also helped us address some new issues away from the workplace. Our accommodation, which is sourced via Durham University, finds us sharing a house with international post-graduate students who are sports scholars at Durham University. In addition to a number of Americans there are also Croatian, Serbian, Dutch students and a Scouser!!! Cultural and language differences plus different perspectives on life have opened our eyes to the fact that the sports world has got so many different considerations.
Finally, new sports are on our radar. Tom’s discovered Lacrosse and Ellen has grown to appreciate Basketball. We’re both still secretly supporting Loughborough however (at the moment anyway!)
Ellen Erskine and Tom Whitley (11th November 2019)