It’s about Squash, one of the fastest games in the world. Without going into detail, a good player must combine the qualities of a sprinter, marathon runner and chess player. The decisive factor is movement and positional play. No game can be won without mastering the center of the court - the socalled “T” - and six strategic points. For this reason, one of the most important trainings for squashers focuses on positional play. It is called “Ghosting” and corresponds to Shadow Boxing or the Kata in various martial arts. In Ghosting the player has the tasks to reach one of the six strategic points from the centre as quickly as possible, to strike a shot there and to reoccupy the central position as quickly as possible in order to control the field from the T.
A ghosting session consists of many of these runs and is extremely challenging. Incorrectly performed, ghosting can lead to inefficient behaviour in the court. Habits or movement patterns can creep in, which make this important training worthless.
A central problem is that a player usually does ghosting alone. This means that he knows in advance which point he is going to ghost next – he decides himself. At the same time we humans tend to like to train what we are already good at. That is not conducive to achieving the goal. Efficient ghosting must therefore always present the player with new situations. And it should be measurable. This is exactly what “Go To The T” does.
“Go To The T” is an Azure-based app for smartphones that are simply placed in the court. The solution supports the planning and execution of ghosting with many functions. But above all, it is able to observe the player in the court in real time. Therefore, it knows where the player is and can give him commands during training that he cannot adjust to beforehand. This creates game-like situations that a player cannot adapt to. Another aspect is that for the first time the app can also measure running and reaction times, so that the player gets information about his progress and weaknesses. To make this work, the app accesses the smartphone’s camera and maps what it sees to an internal model of the squash court. Then it detects the movement in the picture ... that’s the player ... and can coordinate him on the plane. The rest is easy (like any great idea).