Video Time. . .

It’s time for me to step out of my comfort zone and start posting videos of my classes.  I’m testing out the format I’m thinking of using, and I’d like to get feedback from as many students and experts as possible.  I’m not as interested in a critique of my class as much as a critique of the style and format of the video.  I want positive, negative — everything — no matter how big or small.  If the feedback is positive for the format, I’ll continue to post my classes here on Simple BJJ in this evolving format.  Then the white to black belts can pile on with critiquing my class and technique. 

I’ll be improving audio and video as I have time to make modifications to my setup; I know the background noise and activity is a little distracting, so pretend it’s not there.  The direction will also be flipped towards the wall instead of out towards the rest of the academy.  A camera mount and unidirectional mike should handle those particular production warts that are bugging me.

This is part of my journey to black belt.  I want to be a great instructor, as well as maybe give seminars someday.  To do that, I need to hone my instruction and communications skills just as I improve my mat skills.  I don’t practice BJJ exclusively against untrained or compliant opponents, performing kata in the air.  I test myself and put myself in situations where I must use good technique to survive the pressure.  With this video effort, I start trying to survive with the video sharks.

2 thoughts on “Video Time. . .

  1. Cool! I would love to do that myself one day, although you’re a braver man than me as I don’t feel ready yet as a purple belt. 😉

    First thing I would say after watching that – and you mentioned this already – but the audio is poor. Mainly that’s because of the background noise, particularly the people whacking bags at the start, then what sounded like somebody doing construction at the end. Probably difficult to avoid given the venue and timetable, but at the moment it meant I couldn’t actually hear what you were saying for most of the video. Are there any other class times when there won’t also be a striking class going on at the same time?

    The subtitles are a great idea (Jason Scully does that well, if you’ve seen some of his technique videos), which helps to an extent with the audio problems. At points you could perhaps be more descriptive (e.g., ‘base and pressure’ isn’t as helpful as ‘rotate to the left’ etc), but I think that’s a positive addition.

    I’d also get rid of that sound that splits the two techniques, or change it to something else, but that could just be personal preference on my part.

    Either way, I’m looking forward to seeing more. It would also be interested to see things like your warm-up, drilling in class etc, to get an idea of the structure you like to use.

  2. One of my favored styles for presentation is Stephen Kesting’s style. I also like Jason’s work.

    I’m trying to avoid a book of text, but I understand where you’re coming from regarding “base and posture”. I suspect that’s going to be a carefully skated line. I want to have those blurbs be primarily about the steps of execution, so maybe I’ll put the principles in a separate area as needed. I’ll probably put in more callouts, but I don’t have that notion well defined in my head yet.

    The sound blip is just a sample I created in 96. Ouch, I feel old. I like it at the beginning as a simple audio identifier, and I was thinking of using it as an audio cue that a new technique is starting. Sometimes when I’m watching a video I tune out of the second or third demonstration of the technique if I’m familiar with it, then I miss when the next technique is starting. I may change it, nothing else in that personal sample folder would have sounded very good.

    For the stuff the academy puts on their web site, there will be more of the class presented. I’m not sure there’s much use in presenting all that much of a hour long class, other than as a one time promotional/informational piece.

    Thanks for the input. For the life of me I don’t know how a well known internet BJJ guy finds what I made, but I really do appreciate you taking the time to think about what I put up.

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