Inter-observer Reliability of a Real-time Observation Tool in Handball

Iván González-García, Luis Casáis Martínez, Jorge Viaño Santasmarinas, Miguel A. Gómez Ruano


Background: The analysis of the competition in real time is currently one of the most important aspects to develop the sport. The purpose of the analysis should be creating valid and reliable knowledge for coaches to make the best decisions in a situation of competition. Objectives: This study was to determine the inter-observer reliability of the real-time observation tool for handball. Methods: Two groups of two observers each one were required to analyze the men's handball final of the London 2012 Olympic Games (average age: 23.72 ± 2.16 years; experience as handball players: 14.69 ± 1.92 years; experience as coaches: 4.64 ± 4.04 years). The process of training of the observers lasted 22 days, accounting twelve hours of work distributed in 12 training sessions. Results: The reliability showed a very good agreement between the independent observers (Kappa values were 0.96 and 0.90) in the registered events of both teams, and a very good agreement (Kappa values were 0.85 and 0.94) of the registered actions of the goalkeepers. The high coefficient of intra-class correlation with a value of 0.98 and the low value of the standard error with a 0.11 of the actions of the players of both teams showed a high level of inter-observer reliability. Conclusions: These results showed that the tool of observation in handball is reliable for registering the events of a real time match by well-trained observers. With the help of the HandballTAS and using technology, large volumes of real-time data were collected in a simple and easily usable.

Keywords: handball; reliability; performance indicators; real time; game analysis

Full Text:



Altman D.G. (1991). Practical Statistics for Medical Research. London: Chapman & Hall.

Balint E., & Curiţianu E. (2012). The importance of anticipation in increasing the defense efficiency in high performance handball. Bulletin of the Transilvania University of Braşov, 5 (54) (1), 103-112.

Berry K.J., Johnston J.E., & Mielke Jr. P.W. (2008). Weighted kappa for multiple raters. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 107(3): 837-848.

Bilge, M. (2012). Game analysis of Olympic, World and European Championships in Men´s Handball. Journal of Human Kinetics, 35, 109-118.

Bradley P., O'Donoghue P., Wooster B., & Tordoff, P. (2007). The reliability of ProZone MatchViewer: A video-based technical performance analysis system. International Journal Performance Analysis in Sport, 7(3): 117-129.

Choi H., O'Donoghue P., & Hughes M. (2007). An investigation of inter-operator reliability tests for real-time analysis system. International Journal of Performance Analysis in Sport, 7(1): 49-61.

Cooper S., Hughes M., O'Donoghue P., & Nevill A.M. (2007). A simple statistical method for assessing the reliability of data entered into sport performance analysis systems. International Journal of Performance Analysis in Sport, 7(1): 87-109.

Fernández J., Camerino O., Anguera M.T., & Jonsson G.K. (2009). Identifying and analyzing the construction and effectiveness of offensive plays in basketball by using systematic observation. Behavior Research Methods, 41(3): 719-730.

Gruič I., Vuleta D., & Milanovič D. (2006). Performance indicators of teams at the 2003 Men's World Handball Championship in Portugal. Kinesiology, 38(2): 164-173.

Heinemann K. (2003). Introducción a la Metodología de la Investigación Empírica en las Ciencias del Deporte. Barcelona: Paidotribo.

Hopkins W.G. (2000a). Measures of reliability in sports medicine and science. Sport Medicine, 30: 1-15.

Hopkins W.G. (2000b). Reliability for consecutive pair of trials (excel spreadsheet). In: A new view of statistics. Available at Internet Society for Sport Science.; accessed on 24.01.2014

Hordvik M.M. (2011). Læring gjennom videofeedback: Et aksjonsforskningsprosjekt om hvordan anvende video for å bidra til eget lags utvikling. Norway: Thesis Unpublished, Department of Coaching and Psychology.

Hughes M., & Franks I. (1997). Notational Analysis of Sport. London: E & FN Spon.

Hughes M., Cooper S., & Nevill A. (2004). Analysis of notation data: Reliability. Notational Analysis of Sport: System for Better Coaching and Performance in Sport, 2: 189-205.

Hughes M.D., & Bartlett R.M. (2002). The use of performance indicators in performance analysis. Journal of Sports Sciences, 20(10): 739-754.

Jonsson G.K., Anguera M.T., Blanco-Villaseñor Á., Losada J.L., Hernández-Mendo A., Ardá T, … & Castellano J. (2006). Hidden patterns of play interaction in soccer using SOF-CODER. Behavior Research Methods, 38(3): 372-381.

Kent M. (1994). The Oxford Dictionary of Sports Sciences and Medicine. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Krusinskiene R., & Skarbalius A. (2002). Handball match analysis: Computerized notation system. Ugdymas, Kuno Cultura, Sportas, 3(44): 23-33.

Lames M., & McGarry T. (2007). On the search for reliable performance indicators in game sports. International Journal of Performance Analysis in Sport, 7(1): 62-79.

Liu H., Hopkins W., Gómez M.A., & Molinuevo J.S. (2013). Inter-operator reliability of live football match statistics from Opta Sportsdata. International Journal of Performance Analysis in Sport, 13: 803-821.

Lozano D., & Camerino O. (2012). Eficacia de los sistemas ofensivos en balonmano. Apunts. Educación Física y Deportes, 2(108): 66-77.

Martín I., Cavalcanti L.A., Chirosa L.J., & Aguilar J. (2011). El programa PROTODEBA v.1.0. Una proposta per a l´observació de la presa de decisions en hándbol. Apunts. Educación Física y Deportes, 2(104): 80-87.

Martín I., González A., Cavalcanti L.A., Chirosa L.J., & Aguilar J. (2013). Fiabilidad y optimización del programa PROTODEBA v 1.0 para la observación de la toma de decisiones en balonmano. Cuadernos de Psicología del Deporte, 13(1): 63-70.

Meletakos P., Vagenas G., & Bayios I. (2011). A multivariate assessment of offensive performance indicators in Men's Handball: Trends and differences in the World Championships. Internacional Journal of Performance Analysis in Sport, 11(2), 284-294.

Nevill A.M., Atkinson G., Hughes M.D., & Cooper S. (2002). Statistical methods for analysing discrete and categorical data recorded in performance analysis. Journal of Sports Sciences, 20(10), 829-844.

O´Donoghue P. (2010). Research Methods for Sports Performance Analysis. Oxon: Routledge.

O'Donoghue P. (2007). Reliability issues in performance analysis. International Journal of Performance Analysis in Sport, 7(1): 35-48.

Oslin J.L., Mitchell S.A., & Griffin L.L. (1998). The game performance assessment instrument (GPAI): Development and preliminary validation. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 17: 231-243.

Poehler C. (2007). The use of utilius® VS for the diagnosis of tactical modes of behaviour in team hand-ball. Leistungssport, 37(2): 29-32.

Pokrajak B. (2008). EHF Men´s Euro 2008 - analysis, discussion, comparison, tendencies in modern handball. EHF Web Periodical, 1-15.

Prudente J., Garganta J., & Anguera M.T. (2004). Desenho e validação de um sistema de observação no andebol. Revista Portuguesa de Ciências do Desporto, 4(3): 49-65.

Robinson G., & O'Donoghue P. (2007). A weighted kappa statistics for reliability testing in performance analysis of sport. International Journal of Performance Analysis in Sport, 7(1): 12-19.

Rogulj N., Srhoj V., & Srhoj L. (2004). The contribution of collective attack tactics in diffentiating handballl store efficiency. Collegium Antropologicum, 28(2), 739-746.

Smith T.B., & Hopkins W.G. (2011). Variability and predictability of finals times of elite rowers. Medicine Science in Sports & Exercise, 43: 2155-60.

Srhoj V., Rogulj N., Padovan M., & Katić R. (2001). Influence of the attack end conduction on match result in handball. Collegium Antropologicum, 25(2), 611-617.

Taborsky F. (2008). Cumulative indicators of team playing performance in handball (Olympic Games tournaments 2008). EHF Web Periodical, 1-10.

Tenga A., Kanstad D., Ronglan L., & Bahr R. (2009). Developing a new method for team match performance analysis in professional soccer and testing its reliability. International Journal of Performance Analysis in Sport, 9(1): 8-25.

Tzioumakis Y., Michalopoulou M., Aggelousis N., Papaioannou A., & Christodoulidis T. (2009). Youth coaches behavior assessment through systematic observation. Inquiries in Sport & Physical Education, 7(3): 344-354.

Viera A.J., & Garrett J.M. (2005). Understanding inter-observer agreement: The kappa statistic. Family Medicine, 37: 360-363.

Volossovitch A., & Gonçalves I. (2003). The significance of game indicators for winning and losing team in handball. E. Müller, H. Schwameder, G. Zallinger, & V. Fastenbauer (Eds.), Proceedings of the 8th Annual Congress of European College of Sport Science, Salzburg: ECSS, 335.

Vuleta D., Sporiš G., Talović M., & Jelešković E. (2010). Reliability and factorial validity of power tests for handball players. Sport Science, 3(1): 42-46.

Yamada E., Aida H., Fujimoto H., & Nakagawa A. (2014). Comparison of game performance among European National Women´s Handball Teams. International Journal of Sport and Health Science, 12, 1-10.

Zhiwen L., Wei Z., Jianming L., & Jiale T. (2005). The official scouting system of International Handball Federation. In International Association for Sport Information (Eds.), the Value of Sports Information: Toward Beijing 2008, Proceedings of the 12th IASI World Congress, Beijing, China: 62-66.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

2013-2023 (CC-BY) Australian International Academic Centre PTY.LTD.

International Journal of Kinesiology and Sports Science

You may require to add the '' domain to your e-mail 'safe list’ If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox'. Otherwise, you may check your 'Spam mail' or 'junk mail' folders.