Decision Making in Gaelic Football
Expert performance in sport is underpinned by effective and efficient decision making skills. Gaelic Football is a complex and highly dynamic sport with several decisions to be made for any given action. However, very little research has examined the information that is used by expert Gaelic Football players. Moreover, no one has investigated the best way to train these skills such that they transfer from practice to the competitive environment.
The first stage of this project is to use focus groups comprising junior and senior expert Gaelic Footballers, to better understand not only the information sources they use to make decisions on the pitch, but also the factors that may moderate their decisions, such as personality traits. The second stage is to use the information from Stage 1 to develop a performance analysis tool to code and assess decision making in Gaelic Football. Stage 3 is a longitudinal study using the performance analysis tool developed in Stage 2 to measure players’ decision making across a season, both in competition and in training. The final stage will comprise a training intervention to improve Gaelic footballers’ decision making skills and to examine the transfer of these skills to the competitive environment.
Our research provides novel insight into how expert Gaelic Football players make efficient and effective decisions during matches. Moreover, the project will design and test a performance analysis tool which practitioners can use to measure decision making skills. Finally, a training intervention will be designed, which can be used by practitioners interested in training and testing decision making in Gaelic Football.