11 March 2022 – Gloucester Rugby and Podium Analytics (“Podium”), the NGO and charity committed to reducing injury in sport, have today announced a long-term partnership to help understand and prevent injury in youth rugby.
The partnership will see the implementation of the Podium Injury Insight Platform initially at club centres in Hartpury, Stroud, Cheltenham and Abingdon. The platform will allow coaches of Gloucester Rugby’s U16s Developing Player Programme (DPP), a programme that gives talented young players added support with their rugby development, to capture and analyse players’ injury data during training and competition. This will be combined with data collected in participating catchment schools to give a greater understanding of the injury profiles and welfare of some of the club’s youngest players – across both the school and club environment.
Through the Podium Insight Platform, the Coaching Team will have greater confidence in preventing and managing injury by giving them a thorough understanding of the weekly sporting load of youth players. They’ll be able to see, in any given week, how much activity their players have taken part in and any injuries that may have occurred. This information will also support crucial research at the Podium Analytics Institute for Youth Sports Medicine and Technology at the University of Oxford.
Carl Hogg, Director of Academy and Development at Gloucester Rugby, commented: “At Gloucester Rugby, we’re passionate about looking after all of our players. Injuries in the sport happen, but we want to do all we can to prevent them across all teams. We need a standardised incident and injury reporting system, and that’s why we are really excited to partner with Podium.
“Our young players are hugely talented and play a lot of sport each week, but it’s currently hard for teachers and coaches to track their level of weekly sporting activity. With greater transparency between organisations, we hope to be able to better understand why and where injuries occur, and provide better injury prevention and management to ensure the welfare of our players over the long term.”
Damian Smith, Chief Technology Officer of Podium Analytics, said: “Gloucester Rugby is committed to delivering a greater duty of care to its players by demonstrating leadership in reducing injury amongst their younger developing players. Amongst other things, the data collected on the Podium Insight Platform will be instrumental in helping us better understand the links between exposure to sport and injury occurrence in rugby. We would welcome any of the Gloucester Rugby partner schools to join this exciting programme, which is delivered at no cost to the schools.”