Southport Australian Football Club

Based on Australia’s Gold Coast, the Southport Australian Football Club competes in the North Eastern Australian Football League (NEAFL), the tier below the Australian Football League (AFL). The Southport Sharks are one of the most successful clubs at that level, having won 22 titles across their 59 year history. 

Leading the Sharks’ sports science and football analytics is the club’s performance analyst, Mia Dockery. Her responsibilities include analysing the team’s performances and maximising the teams use of Catapult’s PlayerTek technology.

Benefits of PlayerTek – Southport Sharks and AFL alike:

  • Reliable GPS technology

  • Measuring key metrics

  • Increased reporting efficiency

  • Best practice for others when adopting PlayerTek


Reliable GPS technology

Prior to the adoption of Catapult technology, Mia struggled with their existing GPS monitoring technology and so decided to seek out an alternative, quickly turning to Catapult PlayerTek.

Mia explains that she was “first introduced to Catapult through the Optimeye S5 units during a similar role with the Gold Coast Suns” and so was already aware of the benefits the technology offers.

“The GPS system we were previously using [at Southport] did not meet the demands of our club. I wanted a unit that provided reliable data and performed during any session we choose to use it in. I believed that the PlayerTek units would provide the data we needed, plus more features.”

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Measuring Key Metrics

By using PlayerTek, the performance analyst is able to reliably track metrics which are particularly useful to AFL coaches.

Mia and her team track each player’s “total distance, metres covered per minute, high intensity running, velocity bands, and maximum velocity.”

Having measured these metrics for some time, Mia is able to hold well-informed discussions with the coaches and now the insights derived from performance analysis are central to the club’s player evaluations.

“Combining physical performance analysis and coaching has been a great improvement. The heat maps and other data that are produced following a session provide both the performance staff and coaches with valuable information.”

Increased Reporting Efficiency

Since PlayerTek was implemented at the Sharks, the team, and Mia in particular, have been able to take their analysis to the next level.

The ease of use and the features found within the technology have developed and improved player reporting processes. “Since changing to the Catapult system, session reports are much faster and easier to produce compared to previous seasons, and the dashboard gives us an easy to use platform to compare athletes,” Mia explains.

Speeding up the reporting process has greatly benefitted the performance analysis department since the team is predominantly made up of part-time players. “The PlayerTek technology has improved my ability to complete and distribute reports quicker than before which is extremely important given we are a state league club with part-time athletes.”

Best Practice for Teams like the Southport Sharks

Mia has enjoyed using Catapult technology for many years and has suggested how best to implement the technology for teams similar to the Southport Sharks.

“Trial the demo site to get a feel for the PlayerTek system, the metrics it provides, and how easy you can access session data. Show the demo site to coaches to get a feel for their buy-in and interest; the simple report features make it easier to increase coach engagement with the data.”

Mia continues to explain that “overall my experience with Catapult over the past six years has been great. The products are reliable and if there are ever any issues the staff are more than happy to assist at any time.”

Interested in finding out how Catapult can help your team find its competitive edge? Get in touch, today.


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