PSB Academy Holds Talk For Aspiring and Practicing Sports Scientists

Hougang United FC's Dirk Schaeunberg sharing his wealth of experience with the guests.

Aaron Chan
Writer / Editor
The Unofficial S.League Podcast

11 June 2017: PSB Academy held a talk at their City Campus on Saturday (10 June 2017) for aspiring and practicing sports scientists and among the distinguished speakers was Hougang United FC's Head of Sports Performance, Dirk Schauenberg.

The 48-year-old, who worked with Fortuna D├╝sseldorf in the Bundesliga for almost six years before arriving on our shores, captivated the crowd with his interesting encounters which he came across during his line of duty in both his native Germany and in Singapore.

Aptly named Collab X Sports, the talk was part of the Collab multi-series, an ongoing event designed to be a platform for creating opportunities through learning, sharing and networking. Participants learned about how sports science helped our athletes in Team Singapore improve, as well as how the various aspects of sports are developed.

Schauenberg, who also worked with Home United for three seasons before joining Hougang, was candid about his job when he opened off his twenty-minute segment, telling the crowd unequivocally: "I carry out data collection for Hougang United. It may sound boring, but it's what we do with the data that's fascinating."

He showed a series of charts to the audience, one of which depicts a graph of contrasting peaks and valleys. "The top half of this graph shows the speed peaks of a player over the period of a 90-minute S.League game." He goes on to explain one such way on how this graph can be analyzed alongside mobility charts to track whether players are running symmetrically - a key factor to prevent further aggravation to an existing injury which the player might be hiding in fear of losing a starting spot in the team.

The data also helps Schauenberg zoom in on individual areas of a player's anatomy, allow him to work closely with the club's physiotherapists to aid players' recoveries.

Eesha Shah, an Associate Sports Psychologist with the Singapore Sports Institute (SSI), also shared how important Sports Psychology is in today's context. She was one of the unsung heroes working behind the scenes during the Olympics and Paralympics, helping the various athletes in Team Singapore build coping strategies to calm their nerves before and during the games, as well as taking care of our athletes' psychological well-being.

Citing an example from her experience of working with Team Singapore's Paralympics Boccia team, Eesha described how her team of psychologists studied the environment in which the players would be exposed to. They would later incorporate sound clips of a cheering crowd into the daily training of the players, hence habitualising them in the process and helping them to recover quicker between shots.

The other speakers who shared their experiences with the audience were Troy Engle, who has a wealth of track-and-field coaching experience in the United States before moving to Singapore to take on his current role as the Director of Coach Development at Sport Singapore, as well as Jonathan Wong, ‎the Director of Marketing & Communications at Eleven Sports Network, an online braodcaster which provides a wide scope of local and overseas sporting content.

Engle touched on the challenges of being a coach in Singapore and how the CoachSG network is currently working to alleviate the situation while Wong gave an enjoyable presentation to the 60 attendees which included a segment on how American Football teams were now adopting Virtual Reality (VR) technology to enable trainers to place their athletes under different scenarios and analyse their performance thereafter.

As the talk was held on the same day as PSB Academy's Open House, I had the opportunity to explore the expanse of the huge campus and some of the displays were a real eye-opener for me. I had the chance to see how a 3D printer worked in real life (yes, I live in a cave) and people partaking in VR archery contests.

The talk has really given me a whole new perspective on how Sports Science can benefit athletes and it's a pity that I wasn't enlightened before to choose this as my career. However, for those who are keen to know more about how you can make this your career, you may visit

Note: This is a sponsored article courtesy of PSB Academy. 

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