Squash Levels FAQ
These are freqeuently asked questions for the Squash Levels site. Please look through these before contacting us as there is a good chance your question is already covered. If not, then please get in touch and we can add your question to this list. Click on the question to reveal the answer.
Please also take a look through the About this site page as that covers a lot of topics that may also help.
What's in my feed?
Your feed is personal to you and contains a combination of the information you have asked to see and what we think you would like to see. You can configure some of this via your Control Centre. As we continue to develop the site we'll continue to add to your feed so the following list is more of a guide than a comprehensive list though we'll try to keep it up-to-date:
If there is anything else you'd like to see in your feed, do let us know.
My name is wrong. How do I change it?
Your name is received along with your results so if it's wrong then it's likely that it's wrong on your own county system so that's the best place to change it. When your next result is received your name will then be corrected on SquashLevels.
An alernative is to correct your name directly on SquashLevels which can be done by your county admin, by us or by you if you are a member of SquashLevels. You can now lock your name on SquashLevels so it is not updated by new results coming in which is a more permanent solution.
I was injured in my match. How do I stop this affecting my level?
This is a common question as a very poor result can ding your level. There are limits to how much it can drop in one match but if you couldn't complete the match through injury it's probably not a fair representation of your level. This is a sensitive area because your opponent is equally effected and will lose out on what they probably think was a good result! For a result to be recorded as an injury at least one of the following must be true:
That way there is no arugument! This is a common request and quite often an apparently clear injury is recorded as such and then we receive a concerned email from the opponent.
League Master has a flag that can be set in the results form but that can only be set by the league secretary. Please get in touch with them to set that flag. The flag will then be uploaded to SquashLevels along with the results. Note this flag can be applied (or removed) at any time.
Badsquash has a flag that can be set by the team captain when entering the results. This can also be applied at any time.
Because the systems above upload the injury flag along with the results, any injury must be recorded on the respective system. If it is recorded soley on SquashLevels then the flag will be overwritten next time the result is uploaded and the injury record will be lost. The other league systems don't support the injury flag so please get in touch with us here and we can set it directly in SquashLevels. We will need to see evidence as required above.
How do I reset my password?
If you're not logged in then go to the Log in/Join page and from there you will see a form to enter your email address for a link to reset your password. If you don't get the email and you've checked your junk folder then please get in touch with us anyway and we'll reset it from our end.
If you are logged in then you can reset your password directly from Me->My membership.
I have some results in my history which aren't mine
Some of the early results don't have IDs for the players so we had to do our best to match names and just initials in some cases. It's possible that some of these aren't right and that we've accidentally merged two players together. Please let us know if you come across a case like this and we'll separate the players again. It can all be sorted - we have the tools.
I appear twice (or more) on the system
This is quite common when players change club and get re-added to their local league system. As a result, their subsequent results are entered against their new ID causing SquashLevels to treat them as a different player.
You should find that the system spots your 'other' player and asks you to let us know if you really are the same person via a form at the top of the player detail page but, even if not, please let us know and we'll merge the two sets of results. It can all be sorted - we have the tools.
If I change an old result, will it update my level?
Yes. The levels are recalculated from day one every night so if you change a result it will be taken account of in that process. Obviously if the result you changed was old, it won't have any effect on your current level as it's your most recent few matches that determine that.
I'm logged on but I can't change my match result
It's possible that you have a duplicate 'self' on the system and that you're trying to edit your 'other' one. In this case, the system will think you're trying to edit someone else's results and won't let you.
Please check if you have a duplicate on the system and request a merge if so. Once the players are merged, the system will recognise them as you and allow you to edit any of the results.
If this isn't the reason you can't edit your own result then please get in touch and we'll find out what's wrong.
I have results on the system but I don't appear in the rankings
This is usually caused by the system having low confidence in your level and therefore purposely leaving you out of the rankings.
Your level confidence can be low because you only have a small number of matches in your history, you don't have recent results or you've had some unexected results. All these factors will reduce your level confidence and if that drops below 20% it is considered too low to include you in the listings by default.
You can tick the 'confidence' box on the listing page to show level confidence and also un-tick the 'limit by confidence' box to include you and other players with low level confidence on the listing page. Just be aware that players with low confidence levels may not be in the right place in the rankings.
Why am I greyed out in the rankings?
This is usually caused by the system having low confidence in your level but rather than leaving you out of the rankings, it puts you in your rightful position but grayed out. You'll notice that you don't occupy an actual position but you can see where you would be if you did.
Your level confidence can be low because you only have a small number of matches in your history, you don't have recent results or you've had some unexected results. All these factors will reduce your level confidence and if that drops below 20% it is considered too low to include you in the listings normally.
My rankings are not in the right order
We take the accuracy of SquashLevels very seriously so always want to know about cases like this. There are a few common reasons:
If you feel that a player is in the wrong order (by, say more than 10% from a relative level point of view) then please get in touch and we'll take a look. The system is no good if it's not accurate and that's our holy grail!
What is the 4 match moving average?
The level changes are damped quite a bit but they do still go up and down by a few percent each match based on your results. If you're going to be using them for tournament seedings it's a good idea to damp them even more so they are more stable. The 4 match moving average level for a match takes the level from each match and averages it with the levels from the 3 previous matches to provide a heavily damped level for that point in time.
For the rankings, this 4 match average applies to the 4 most recent matches.
I have a result that's not right. How do I fix it?
All the league and tournament results on SquashLevels are imported automatically from the various league systems so the best place to fix an incorrect result is on the local league system itself. Once corrected, that result will be re-sent to SquashLevels and all will be well.
To edit your result on SquashLevels, click on the match date in the player history and you will be taken to a page from which you can edit it. Note that; you must be logged on, you must be one of the players and the update will be recorded so we can track who is changing what.
Failing that, the result can be updated directly on SquashLevels either by us, by your county admin or by you (if you're registered as a member) but, beware, the incorrect result on the local league system could be re-sent and overwrite the corrected result at some point in the future.
My level is changing gradually over time and I'm not even playing. What's going on?
SquashLevels is a multi-county system and part of its nightly processing is to calibrate the levels of players across counties. As the sources of results tend to be from one county at a time, the system looks for players who play in more than one county to help calibrate between them.
This comparison is made every night and if a county appears sightly high or slightly low then all of the players in that county are adjusted by anything up to 1%. This will happen over a period until the county as a whole is calibrated. This process is relatively new so you may find that your level is changing at the moment. Within a week or two it should settle.
How do I take a SquashSkills test?
The squash challenges are designed to be very straight forward. Each test is one minute long and requires you to either count the number of consecutive shots you can hit into the target area or the total number of shots that you hit into a target in the one minute time period.
On the More info page you will find specific instructions as well as an explainer video to guide you through the test.
You can use the built-in countdown timer which can be accessed by clicking the Take Test button or you can use a stopwatch and enter your results at a convenient time.
The beep test is available on the website. You may wish to use another version but please do ensure that it is the standard 20 minute test. Note it's two court lengths per beep! The other fitness tests require you to record your times with a stopwatch or tape measure and add your scores to the website.
Once you have recorded your result you will be able to see your scores in a chart. We have a lot of data relating to the squash testing and provide typical scores based on your level. Once you have done all ten squash tests we even work back and give you a derived, skills-based level you can compare with your actual level. You can play with the expected scores by using the level +/- buttons on the test overview page.
How can I get my league results on SquashLevels?
We're keen to work with all counties and leagues so please ask them to get in touch. We can work with pretty much any format of result data - we just need access to it - but by far the best method is for your league website to provide a consolidated page for latest results and we can pull that automatically every night. This will require assistance from your county leads and webmaster so it'll take a bit of coordinating. Perhaps bring it up at your county's next AGM.
I can't find a player on the system
There aren't any filters on the search page but if you're searching from the rankings page then please check if you have filters set that would exclude the player you are looking for. Click on 'Reset filters' to make sure the filters are off and try again. If you still can't find a player then they are probably not on the system yet.
There a very large number of players on the system, nearly all added automatically as their results were received from a source league or tournament system. However, not all league and tournament systems feed results to SquashLevels so it's possible that some players have not been added.
If you would like a player and their results to be added to the system, the best bet is to ask the league or tournament organiser to ask their system provider to get in touch with us and we'll help them set up an automated feed quickly and easily. Feel free to copy us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can follow up. Don't be left out of the fun!
If you have played a competitive match against the player, and they agree to have that match recorded, then you can record the result on the system yourself and add them that way.
How can I set up club boxes on SquashLevels?
Club boxes are automated but you'll need to start with a request to us to set one of your club members up as a club admin. The club admin can then set up the boxes and add all the players directly on the system. If you have a lot of players then we can also get you going if you give us a list of names.
We will provide a club-wide log-on to allow non-members to enter their own results (there is a charge for this - see the membership page) and then you're off and rolling.
Some of my results are missing
Many systems on which competitive results are recorded (boxes, leagues, tournaments) have upload connections to SquashLevels and, in most cases, your results should be sent across automatically every night but there are still a few systems that don't have a connection. The first thing to check is if the system has upload to SquashLevels and you can find that out by asking the event organiser - they should know. If not, do please ask the organiser to ask the appropriate system provider to connect up and we will do our best to make it easy.
Another posibility is the results have been missed by the source system if, say, they are old results being back-filled/updated. Most systems will send old/updated results through but not all. In this case, please get in touch and we'll have a look. We can always pull historic results using special feeds on request.
SquashLevels will not accept 'duff' results such as 15-0, 15-0, 15-0 (they cause havoc with the rankings) or dates set in the future so please also check that the result is sensible.
We keep a history of the results upload from all source systems so should be able to find out why a result hasn't made it over.
Can I add my own results?
Yes. Just register as a member and you'll be able to add 'Club matches' against anyone in your club. You can even add club members if they are not already on the system.
Can I add my friendly matches too?
You can, but better if you don't. SquashLevels is a results based system that assesses how well you're playing based on your results and the level of your opponents. If you play a friendly then it's likely you won't be playing a truly competitive match and your level will get dinged. We do allow a range for the better player to play in but if you drop games to someone half your level then you're going to be going down... and, equally bad, your opponents wil be going artificially up.
We will add a future feature to allow you to enter your results but exclude them from the level calculations (that's really intended for dealing with injuries) but that's not available yet. Watch this space on that one.
I did well at an event that is not on the system. Can I add those results?
You can't add them personally as you are restricted to entering club challenges even as a member.
There is also an issue that if you add your results from a single event then all your opponents suddenly see a single result for the whole event when they know they played three of four matches. That's confusing and usually results in them emailing us. It's particularly unfair if that single result wasn't a good one for them and it causes their level to go down - very annoying if that's your only bad match in the whole tournament yet that's the one on the system. This is what normally happens when one player, who had a great tournament, enters just their own results!
So the rule is they either all go in or none of them go in.
It's possible that the results can still go in even if they're not already there. It somewhat depends what system it was run on. If you can find out then please let us know and we may be able to connect with the system developer. Not really feasible if it was run on Excel or bits of paper though.
Having said that, if someone is prepared to hand enter all the results then we can support that and give then the appropriate admin level to do so.
I updated my match results but my level hasn't changed
The level is recalculated for the match just updated but if that's not the most recent match then your latest level will not be changed. Level history is re-calculated every night so just wait until the morning and it will all be sorted.
The level changes in my history aren't consistent
Sometimes you can see that your level has gone up by, say 5%, but when you look at your actual levels on your history page it hasn't. It may even have gone down!
The most likely cause of this inconsistency is that someone may have updated the results (maybe there were corrections) since the nightly processing was run so now one or two of the results aren't consistent. Level history is re-calculated every night so just wait until the morning and it will all be sorted.
My game score has made it across but not my points scores
Some of the league systems rely on manual results entry and it's not always a set of scores that SquashLevels can interpret. This sort of thing is not uncommon: 9-5,9-69-4 for instance. It could be argued that this sort of result could be pulled apart but, for now, we check for pairs of numbers that are within reasonable limits. This example will fail this check so can't be used.
If you can correct the score entry on your league system then it will be re-sent to SquashLevels and all will be well.
I won my match but my level went down. How did that happen?
It's important to remember that the level calculated by SquashLevels is an assessment of how well you're playing at the moment and that is based on your results and the level of the person you played. If you're better than your opponent then you're expected to win so the big question is not 'did you win?' but how did your result compare with what was expected? If you didn't do as well then your level will go down - at least a little.
It's similar to asking your teammates on the balcony how well you played. You may well have won the game but they will know if you made a bit of a meal of it...
This is important as it rewards effort. You can nearly always get a level reward for putting the effort in and doing better than expected. This is perfect for juniors as there's always something to go for whoever you're up against. You might be expected to lose but you can still improve your level and that's something to go for.
There is some leeway for players that have quite different levels because we don't expect a much better player to hammer their lowly opponent just to keep their ranking up. In this case, the system assumes there's a range that the better player might play at and only if the result falls outside the range will either player's level be changed.
We do receive suggestions that winners should be rewarded for winning and they certainly shouldn't take a drop in level which is similar to the classic tournament systems. In this case players are awarded points for every round won, usually doubling each round, and the guys that win the tournaments get vast numbers of points. That all sounds fine but if you don't play many tournaments or you keep getting seeded against better players and get knocked out too early then your points tally isn't going to be representative and you'll be stuck way down the rankings - and that can be hard to get out of as it tends to self-perpetuate given the way seedings are done. This is a very common problem with tournament based rankings.
And what if you don't play tournaments? How would you treat a win in the boxes compared to a win in the league for instance? What if you always have easy league games? Systems that give a win bonus cause the better players to want to play further down the team order to seal that bonus. That's not the kind of behaviour we want to promote.
Using levels and estimating your actual playing level reasonably accurately based on both the games score and the points score is what makes the system accurate, inclusive and relatively independent of the match you are playing and where you are seeded in the team. If we were to give bonuses for winning it would skew the levels and the rankings would quickly become inaccurate and, worse still, change player behaviour out in the leagues.
Another problem is that if you increase the level of one player without reducing the level of their opponent then the average level of that match - and therefore the entire system - goes up over time which means you can't compare a player's level over time. This already happens to some extent due to the behavioural modelling and there are other factors taken into account and so the average has to be pulled back somehow, very gradually, over time. It's a complex part of the algorithm but it's essential that there isn't net gain or net loss across the system.
How is my level change calculated?
If you click on the level change text in your results history, you will be taken to a page that explains how that level change was calculated. It is the actual level change code that runs in this page, except it's in 'verbose' mode so you can see what's happening (which is why it's a little cryptic). If you still can't see what happened please get in touch and we'll explain it.
How is my initial level calculated?
This is done automatically by the system and is based on your first few results. As long as someone somewhere in your league has a level, the system can work out everyone else's level based on the chain of results - even if that means working backwards in time. The first pass at this gives an approximate set of levels but this is fine tuned every night so after a week or so of your first results going in, your initial level will be accurate and stable.
Your initial level can also be adjusted by the inter-league calibration process that runs every night as that's how whole leagues are adjusted. These adjustments are normally very small but can be significant over time. Once the leagues are calibrated, they go stable.
Your initial level can also be overridden manually. If you really think the system has got it wrong then get in touch with your county admin and it can be corrected.
What is level confidence?
As well as having a level, you have a level confidence. This is a figure used to express (as a percentage) how much confidence the system has in your level - 10% for new players, 70% or more for established players. It is adjusted as follows:
The effect it has is that if your level confidence is lower than that of your opponent then your level will move more quickly than theirs. This allows the system to adjust the levels of the players who's level might be inaccurate more quickly with limited impact on their opponents. It also allows fast moving players to move fast!
The system has me down for the wrong county
The system updates player information based on the results that come in. For instance if you play in the Yorkshire leagues for Barnsley it will update your information for both county and club. This will mean you appear under the Yorkshire and Barnsley player listings.
If, however, you are affiliated to a different county and only want to be listed as a player for that county (for the county rankings) then you can ask your county admin to lock your county so that it isn't updated by new results.
What personal information does the system store about me?
It obviously has your name, match results and a calculated level and it has that for everyone on the system. If you register as a member then we also ask for an email address and for you to identify which player on the system you are. That's it. Your password is encrypted before it's put into the database so we have no idea what it is. We also don't send emails out unless we have a query specifically related to you.
There's no personal information, anything to track you with and no advertising or marketing use for them.
How do I remove myself from the system if I don't want to be listed'?
We get results from many different source systems so if you have results on one of those we can't really stop them coming across. Also, as your matches are also your opponents' matches they get confused if their results aren't visible and we then receive questions we have to answer which defeats the object of not wanting to be shown in the first place... It just highlights it!
What we can do is make you disappear so your name and your history are unavailable to anyone on the site. You will not show up in any searches or rankings and your profile will not be visible. If you are registered you can still find your profile but your name will be replaced with 'Name Withheld'. Most importantly, you will not appear in any Google searches once anything they have cached for you expires which usually doesn't take long.
Another important reason for keeping hold of your data is because, even though it's not visible, we maintain mappings from the source system IDs to SquashLevels IDs. This means that new results coming in will be added to your hidden profile and they will be hidden too. If we delete your data - and therefore your mappings - then the system doesn't know who you are and will create a new, visible, profile for you and you'll be back where you started!
Please note that the data on the system is harmless - nothing personal is shown - and it's only a repeat of what is already shown on the source league systems (apart from your level history) but we respect your right to not have your name displayed on the internet and can make you disappear very quickly. You don't have to tell us why.
Of course, if you continue to play and have your results recorded on source league or tournament systems your name and results will still be visible on them. You may need to get in touch with those providers to be removed from those as well - though that is genuinely impractical on these systems as the results need to be posted to run the league/event.
What is the 'Player of the month'?
At the start of each month, we show the most improved player for both their club and their county for the previous month. The club and county shown are based on the page you are looking at. For instance if you look at a player history page you will see their club and county whereas if you look at a rankings page you will see the club and/or county shown in the rankings. If the page doesn't suggest an obvious club and/or county then your club and county are used as long as you are logged on.
Note that the system works out the most improved player for every club and county during the nightly processing so updates can be delayed by up to 24 hours. There are also two entry criteria for a player to be eligible:
You can always see the players of the month for your club and county from the 'Rankings' pull-down. From here you can see last month's winners and also the contenders for this month.
This feature recognises the most improved players in all clubs and counties and their names are in the spotlight in the yellow banner on every page for a few days at the start of each month. Glory indeed!
How does SquashLevels compare to Resultszone?
Resultszone is a league system that also has its own rankings which means that both functions are accessed from the same system. For some time, results from Resultzone have been exported to SquashLevels (although somewhat sporadically) so players have been able to look themselves up and find their level history and their rankings in the UK.
For those counties that have transitioned from Resultszone to League Master, things are slightly different. League Master doesn't use its own ranking system but is integrated with SquashLevels to offer the levels and positions indirectly. It also provides links for each player to go straight to their player history, their club or county rankings on SquashLevels. Once on SquashLevels, there are links in the player history page to link back to League Master. So although the league and ranking systems are separate, the user can navigate between them seamlessly.
One area of confusion may be over the numbers used for the different ranking systems. Resultszone uses the matrix system which bumps players up or down based on their results giving a list of players in about the right order of ability. This is also true for SquashLevels except the numbers that SquashLevels uses are mathematically calculated around the ratio of playing level such that a player with twice the level of another player is actually twice as good and will get twice as many points. This allows all sorts of other features such as predicting results or calculating the chance of winning a game for instance.
Although the matrix system is less accurate, it's feasible to map Resultszone ranking 'points' to SquashLevels levels. Just to give you some idea:
Testing - What is my derived level?
There are ten skills tests that each test an area of racket skills that, between them, give quite good coverage of the skills needed in normal match play.
Based on the testing data from hundreds of players of varying level, we have been able to correlate between a player's level and the score they should expect to get for each test - and also from the test score they get back to their likey level.
We have been able to scale and map each test score such that we can combine them and work back to a derived, technical level and that it what we show on the testing page once you have completed all ten skills tests.
It's likely that your dirived level is not the same as your actual level but it's also likely that it's not too far off. The differences are likely to be related to your strength and fitness and also your mental approach to the game but having a derived technical level is an interesting measure in itself.
For all of your tests, you will have an expected score based on your level. A good starting point is to identify those tests where your actual score is lower than your expected score as those are likely to be good areas for you to work on. If you have better skills, you'll have better results!
NGB - How do I get ES (England Squash) membership?
In order to qualify for the ES discount you need to be an activated member of England Squash.
The first part of this is ES membership. You can either become a member through your club, if it is affiliated, or you can join directly via the ES website. It's a little cheaper through your club so worth asking them first. Once you are a member you will keep that membership for the full year, even if you change clubs.
To join England Squash direct, click here to visit their player membership page. Here you can also see the other benefits of ES membership.
The second part is the activation of your ES account. To do this you need to log on to the ES website and provide your contact details. This is usually only needed if you join via a club as you will already have entered the information needed if you joined direct.
To activate your account, note your log-in details from your ES registration and log-on here You should be guided to complete your details and activate your account.
Once you have activated ES memberhsip you will automatically qualify for either free SquashLevels-England membership or for a significant discount off SquashLevels Gold. For that, you will need to register on SquashLevels (for free) and then add your ES number to your player data if it's not already there. See the section below to find out how your ES number may already be associated with your player details.
NGB - Where did my ES (England Squash) membership number come from?
If at all possible, we receive your ES membership number from your county league system but this is only supported by Leaguemaster at the moment. Long term we are working wth ES for them to have a robust membership system that users and systems like SquashLevels can access but, in the interim, we have received a membership dump from ES (with all the personal data removed) and done our best to match player names and clubs from the ES system to what's been entered into SquashLevels.
With all the freehand data entry for the membership system it's been a somewhat approximate process but we reckon to have matched up about a third of the players on SquashLevels and they now have their ES membership number available in their player histories. There may be a few incorrect match-ups but the vast majority are probably pretty good.
You can see if a player has an ES membership number in their SquashLevels records because it will show 'ESM: Yes' just under their name but only SquashLevels members can see what their own number is and whether it's current or not. This is because you can access personal data from the ES website if you know your membership number so we keep it safely hidden from everyone but you.
If your ES membership number is wrong then you can edit it along with your other player details by clicking on the 'Edit' button near the top of your history page. You do need to be logged in.
NGB - How do I join Wales Squash?
In order to qualify for the Welsh Squash discount you need to play in the Welsh leagues and be Welsh!
There are entry requirements to join the leagues requiring a Wales Squash ID. Please contact the league organiser for more details.
NGB - How do I join Swedish Squash?
In order to qualify for the Swedish Squash discount you need to be a member of Swedish Squash and we need to have you on our list of Swedish Squash players which is sent to us by your federation. If you are a member of Swedish Squash but are not being offered the discount, please ask your federation to update us with your details.
Admin - how do I correct player details?
From the player's history page you should see an edit button at the top. From the edit page you can change those player details based on your admin level. If you need to change a detail that appears to be unchangeable then please contact us. We can change the information or bump your admin level up so that you can do it yourself.
Admin - how do I adjust a player's starting level?
The system does its best to work out a player's starting level based on their first match and then, afterwards, may adjust it if it doesn't look right. In most cases, you can leave the system to do its thing but that can take time and that's no good if players are in the wrong place in the rankings and that's causing trouble.
A player's starting level is included as part of their details and you can edit it on the same page. See above section on how to edit a player's details. You may have to scroll down to find the starting level field. Also note that you can change it but you can also set it 'manually' such that the system won't come back and change it again.
If the player has played a few matches then the starting level is less significant to their current level. This is only really useful to do if the player is new to the system and their first match wasn't representative.
Admin - how do I correct match results?
Whenever you see a date for a match, you'll find that is also a link to the match detail page. From the match detail page, if you have admin rights, you will see a button to edit the match. The button will indicate what level of admin rights you have.
Within the edit match page you will be able to edit the match details based on your admin level. If you are unable to edit the details you need then you may not have the right admin level. In this case please get in touch with us and either we can make the changes for you or we'll bump up your admin level so you can make the changes yourself.
Admin - how do I find and merge duplicate players?
As an admin, there are several ways to actively find duplicate players.
Admin - how do I change club names or consolidate two clubs that are really the same?
This is something we need to do from our end but we need your help to identify them so please let us know if you're aware of duplicate clubs or mispelled clubs. Note there are a few clubs that are the same but appear in different counties. For now we're keeping those separate so they show up correctly in the rankings. At some point we'll work out a clever way of combining them!
Admin - how can I see what my player's ES membership numbers are?
Quite a few of the source systems also supply ES membership numbers with the results during the updates each night and these can be viewed either in the player's history page or by selecting the check box 'ES numbers' at the top of the rankings pages. Note that only the appropriate admins can see a player's ES membership number.
The system checks the membership number against the ES database so can tell if the number is valid, invalid or expired. It only does this when needed (when the pages are viewed) and only does it once per week maximum to reduce the number of accesses to the ES database.
Very useful for checking if your league players are members of ES - which they should be.