Occassional thoughts about orienteering

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Crazy terrain and hyper-detail map


This is a fascinating map. The mapper must have been able to draw the vegetation from air photos. Some of the symbols are a bit odd. What are those brown lines near controls 46 and 47? What about the thin black lines along the streams? It looks like a very special, and very interesting, place.

The Google image gives you a sense of the terrain.

Thierry Gueogiou describes is as, "One of my nicest training ever, map super precise with all the single vegetation details - amazing."

Back to okansas.blogspot.com.

posted by Michael | 7:42 PM


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Swimming coach on using video to review bad performances


A Canadian swimming coach designed a way to work with video of swimmers who are watching races where they made some sort of mistake. The coach has the athletes do three things as they watch a failed performance on video:

1. Express the feelings they had when they watch the failed race;
2. Think about what went went wrong; and
3. Imagine performance changes for the next race.

These three steps reduced the negative emotions and prepared the swimmers for action and improvement.

The Canadian swimmers review bad performances "poolside" and think about how they would fix the problems.

That same approach might work for an orienteer reviewing a headcam video of a race.

Thiery Gueorgiou has used a headcam. In an article at O-training.net he's quoted as saying:

The first things I learned was that my map reading frequency decreased during the race, which is obviously a sign of tiredness for me.

You wonder if Gueorgiou then imagined a way to correct that - maybe a way of training to maintain a high map reading frequency even when he was tired.

By the way, the info about the Canadian swimming coach is from Sian Beilock's book Choke.

Back to okansas.blogspot.com.

posted by Michael | 8:21 PM


Saturday, January 15, 2011

Limited financial resources


From Kristoffer Henriksen's dissertation on the environment of successful sport clubs:

Common to all three environments was the perception by participants that there were limited financial resources. Set alongside this was a shared reluctance to let this fact be a barrier accompanied by a positive focus on other available resources. In the 49er team the prospects did not have a coach of their own, financial resources for talent development were scarce and the state of equipment was well below that of their international competitors. These factors were compensated for through open collaboration and sharing databases. IFK Växjö did not have the financial means to employ coaches, but management focused instead on the helpful attitude of a large number of skilled volunteer coaches and helpers. For the kayakers the fact that the club employed no coaches was abundantly outweighed by the open training community with elite athletes; the low budget accommodation at competitions was perceived as promoting close friendships; and the dilapidated weight-lifting room became a reminder that high quality training depends on the athlete and not on the equipment.

All three environments pointed, furthermore, to the help provided by the natural environment as a resource in their efforts – the long coastline of Denmark, for example, or the town size of Växjö, or for the Wang athletes the easy access to the club and to well-protected waters.

Henriksen studied three sports clubs in Scandinavia that have had success developing juniors into elite athletes. The club sports are sailing, kayaking and track and field. Henriksen focused on the organizations' environments, something I find interesting.

The quote above caught my eye a few days ago.

Back to okansas.blogspot.com.

posted by Michael | 5:29 PM


Rambling notes about injuries


A few days ago it struck me that a lot of the people who I follow on Attackpoint get sick and injured a lot. A few years ago, I tried to see if I could predict injuries and illness. I picked out a few runners and each day I'd check their log, read what they wrote, and give it a score. I'm having trouble remembering all of the details, but the score was something really simple, like a 1-3 scale, where the higher the number the more I figured they were likely to get sick or hurt. I kept it up for a month or two and then got bored.

The main thing I remember was a few false positives. Runners who's training made me think they were likely to get sick. But they didn't get sick (at least during the month or two I was watching).*

There's lots of generic advice on avoiding injuries: don't increase your training more than 10 percent; stretch; strength train; and so on. But, despite all that advice, lots of people seem to get injured. Maybe they're not following the advice. Or maybe the advice doesn't actually work.

*An aside. Probably just coincidence, but the people I was following who scored highests on my scale didn't get sick during the period I was following, but have had some longer-term injury problems in more recent times.

Back to okansas.blogspot.com.

posted by Michael | 8:37 AM


Thursday, January 13, 2011

Update on video+GPS experiments


Here's another video+GPS experiment (from Jagge):

And the current "state of the art" from Attackpoint.

Back to okansas.blogspot.com.

posted by Michael | 7:20 PM


Saturday, January 01, 2011

Latest video+GPS tracking


The latest version of the Attackpoint GPS+video tracking adds a very nice feature - the video syncs with an orienteering map from QuickRoute. You can see an example from a training course I ran yesterday. Click to start the video and a dot on the orienteering map tracks the progress. Check the box for "follow" and the map will stay oriented. Very cool.

I made the tracking video by running the course with a head cam. I cut the file size down and may have gone a bit too far. The resolution isn't so good. But, it gives you a good idea of how the Attackpoint system functions.

I spent some time looking at head cam videos and came across one I hadn't seen before. On Youtube is is listed as having just 14 views, so I'm guessing there aren't many people who've seen it. Anders Nordberg runs a sprint course with Jorgen Rostrup following him. It makes for a really nice use of a head cam and it is quite fun to watch Nordberg orienteer. It gives a sense of how relentless a really good orienteer moves through the forest.

Back to okansas.blogspot.com.

posted by Michael | 9:56 AM


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