The Learning Game: Aptus tackles mental side of sports

AUSTIN (KXAN) — How well, how fast and how much can they learn? Aptus Assessments is an Austin-based company that provides something most don’t think about with athletes.

“We know how our players learn and it’s not a guessing game anymore. We’re able to know specifically what to do,” Southwestern University football coach Joe Austin said.

The common misconception in the team game is that these large groups of people should be lumped together. However, teams are made up of different people with rather different learning skills.

“Probably the first application was last year, we were able to look at our offense as a whole and know that they learn better through walk through’s than chalk talks. We can’t have 128 individualized practice plans but we can really tailor it to what our larger group of players do,” Austin said.

This is done through testing to see how an athletes defines, processes and executes instructions and information

“This player doesn’t have the intangibles or this player just doesn’t get it. More importantly what we hear is when are they going to get it or will they ever get it? What we found and what science has showed is that when someone gets it is completely dependent on how they get it,” Aptus Assessments CEO Eric Vaughn said.

Southwestern University in Georgetown is a division three program working with Aptus, but the company also has power five schools on its client list including Texas A&M, Notre Dame and Stanford.

“Whether you’re a high school, a division three school, or a division one power five conference school, what Aptus is providing is the ability to understand the how,” Vaughn said.

“We make sure they understand how they learn, how they should study their books and their playbooks. They still have to do it, but as a coach I feel really good about knowing that we’re leaving no stone unturned,” Austin said.

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