'We look at the data and hopefully it can help us' - Ward on Town's use of sports science
PUBLISHED: 13:41 07 August 2018 | UPDATED: 13:41 07 August 2018
Grant Ward believes Ipswich Town’s new use of sports science will stand them in good stead as the Paul Hurst era clicks into gear.
The Blues began the campaign with a 2-2 draw with Blackburn on Saturday, with the players having been put through a gruelling pre-season by new manager Hurst prior to the big kick-off.
Hurst’s appointment, as well as the arrival of new fitness coach Nathan Winder, has seen the squad wearing GPS tracking vests which record physical data from both training sessions and games, with a greater emphasise placed on sports science.
Ward, who sat out the opening-day draw through suspension, used the technology during his time as a young player at Tottenham and believes it can help he and his team-mates overall performances.
“Going into the season you want to be as fit as possible and the coaches here have been good at that – they’ve been monitoring our data so we can all be ready when called upon,” he said.
“It’s something I’ve been used to, I’ve been brought up with that at Tottenham, but since I’ve been here we didn’t really wear GPS and monitor things like that. We monitored how far we ran in games and things like that but not as in-depth as we do now.
“I like to look at the data and, most times, I run the most and things like that. I do look at the data and hopefully it can help me.
“I think it’s different for different people. Because we’re doing it and looking at it a lot more people take an interest. We have a group chat now where things go up on there, like who’s the quickest, but everyone’s taken it onboard and we’re looking fitter for it.”
Ward will return to the Blues squad for this weekend’s visit to Rotherham, with the 23-year-old excited to try and prove his worth under his new manager.
“I enjoy trying to adapt to a new system and things like that and we’ve had a few new players come in as well,” he said.
“We all need to adapt and hopefully we can do that as early as we can. I can operate on the wing or inside but it’s nice to have a position. Hopefully I can get on it, get forward and not always be defending.
“Both Jordan (Roberts) and Gwion (Edwards) have looked good, looked positive, so I’m sure they will be good additions.”