The contents of a Needs Analysis
As previously mentioned, a needs analysis can, and should be conducted on both the sport and the athlete. A sport-orientated needs analysis will look at the specific demands of that sport. For example, the duration of the sport, is it land-based or water-based, and is it an individual or team-based sport? On the other hand, an athlete-orientated needs analysis will assess the athlete’s current physical profile – i.e. age, gender, weight, strength, speed, and power.
Identifying the demands of the sport are often done first as this allows the coach to identify what qualities the athlete needs to possess in order to perform well in that sport. Using the 100m sprint as an example, the coach would identify that speed is a vital component in performing well in that sport. For that reason, the coach may decide to test the athlete’s speed in order to identify their current ability and what segments of their speed needs work. Therefore a needs analysis is often conducted in three parts:
- Section 1: Sport-orientated needs analysis
- Section 2: Profiling the athlete (athlete-orientated analysis)
- Section 3: Comparative analysis