After a pair of dominant wins over Japan (5-0) and Austria (6-0), Germany clinched a place in the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics Ice Hockey Tournament with a victory over hosts Latvia. The German team, led by head coach Marco Sturm, defeated the Latvians in Riga by a score of 3-2.
The popular Firstbeat Sports monitoring system, currently used by nearly half of the teams in the NHL, proved a critical resource for the Germans leading up to their successful Olympic qualifying run.
The German Ice Hockey Federation introduced Firstbeat Sports as a system wide training and player development tool in November of 2015. Use of the platform was implemented for use by the German men’s and women’s national teams and across all age groups.
That decision paid quick dividends as an emboldened German Men’s Team made a surprise run to the quarter-final stage of the 2016 IIHF World Championships held in June.
“The Firstbeat Sports system has been an important resource for our whole coaching staff throughout our successful Olympic qualification process,” explained German National Team Trainer Johannes Egelseer in comments after the victory in Latvia. “We were able to successfully document and manage the training loads of each player on the team individually. This was possible even though players came to us from different clubs and with different training and recovery conditions. We were able to find the optimal path forward.”
“In addition to the subjective feedback we get from talking with the players, we were able to ground our plans with real data. That element is critical to finding the right level of training stimulus for each individual player”
Having already secured their ticket to Pyeongchang 2018, the Germans can focus on preparing for their last tournament of the year, the Deutschland Cup. A field of Germany, Slovakia, Switzerland and Canada will compete in that tournament held November 4-6 in Augsburg, Germany.
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