PSV Eindhoven

Translating football expertise into digital modules


There’s no need to introduce PSV Eindhoven. With Ajax and Feyenoord, the Dutch club has been at the top of Dutch and European football for years. Ruud Gullit, Ruud Van Nistelrooij, Philip Cocu… are names that still capture the imagination.

Of course, behind such a top team is an entire organization that does its best to allow homegrown youth talent and top national and international players to excel. An extremely significant role is reserved for coaches who share their experiences and methods with players and fellow trainers.


A number of international football clubs have a partnership with PSV. They come to the club to teach their coaches PSV’s specific training methods. ‘From partner clubs from the United States, Mexico, Brazil… we get asked if they can see how we train our youth, players, coaches,’ says Mitch van Gellekom, content developer at PSV.

That request is not so surprising. ‘We’ve got a football school with a certain style of play. Not only do we have a lot of expert knowledge about football, but we also have renowned coaches and international stars in our team. Based on this specific demand we founded the PSV Coaching Academy. It’s a platform where we explain how we work and why we do what we do. Partner clubs can use that as inspiration to take their coaches to the next level.’

Cool, fast videos

Before PSV started working with FLOWSPARKS, there was actually no structured way of passing on the expertise of the coaches. Foreign coaches visited Eindhoven or the PSV coaches went abroad to train other coaches. ‘But in this way we created little lasting value. It was a one-off. And we had no control over what knowledge and expertise our coaches passed on and how they did it.’

‘So we started searching for a tool to create our own e-Learning modules’, van Gellekom continues. GoodHabitz is one of our major sponsors. All our people have access to their training. GoodHabitz recommended FLOWSPARKS to us. But then the question arose: how are we going to translate the expertise of our coaches into practical e-Learning?’

‘As a content developer, I make cool, short videos for the club,’ says van Gellekom. ‘So for me it made sense that we should make e-Learning as visual as possible. You can write down how a ball should fly, but of course you can show it much more easily.’

FLOWSPARKS in practice

A few people from PSV were given a crash course in FLOWSPARKS and quickly set to work themselves. ‘My role is to build the platform, create the scripts and the videos,’ van Gellekom explains. ‘I do this together with the coaches in front of and behind the camera and I translate their technical explanation into simple language, so that it is also understandable for lower level coaches.’

Accessibility was a must for PSV. FLOWSPARKS satisfies this requirement both in terms of content, with the possibility of using short, simple videos in digital learning paths, and technically with a tool that is very easy to use. ‘The coaches who use FLOWSPARKS literally do this on the pitch during the training. They watch a video on their smartphone, physically put the game situation on the football pitch and explain to their players what to do. Our e-Learning tool (in terms of both Authoring Tool and LMS) had to be simple, fast and ‘mobile friendly’ because they often use it on their phone. FLOWSPARKS meets all these requirements.’

In the meantime, PSV has six modules lasting six weeks each, with at least two videos every week. That is 72 videos that are available in FLOWSPARKS. But bonus material such as podcasts and interviews with coaches is also offered. All this content is now available in English and Dutch. ‘Later on Spanish should also follow for our partners in Spanish-speaking countries and then we will look at it again. Maybe we need to update material, maybe new exercises will be added.’

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Translating football expertise into digital modules

Our coaches are very pleased to support the training sessions on and off the pitch via their smartphone with the SMARTVIDEO learning format from FLOWSPARKS. Because you can write down how a ball should fly, but a video still captures the imagination more than words.

Pleasant tool

‘The coaches are very positive,’ says van Gellekom. ‘They’re very happy to plan their training in this way.’ But he is also very happy with FLOWSPARKS: ‘It’s a very accessible tool even for a layman. It’s a bit like WordPress and you can easily place content as you want with the drag-and-drop functionality and quickly build e-Learning.’

‘Finally, what I really like about FLOWSPARKS are the short lines of communication. If you have a question, you will get an answer from the support department very quickly. That’s going really well. And I can always drop in, because the Dutch office is just around the corner.’