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View Full Version : Best Way to Video Yourself?


JackB1
10-23-2009, 07:58 AM
I want to post some video to get some feedback on my strokes.

What is the best angle and place to put the camera? From behind? From the side or angle? I am guessing about shoulder height?

Also, should I just hit some shots from a fixed position and focus the camera in on just me or should I video the whole court to show all my actions while I play a match?

thanks

boojay
10-23-2009, 08:53 AM
I want to post some video to get some feedback on my strokes.

What is the best angle and place to put the camera? From behind? From the side or angle? I am guessing about shoulder height?

Also, should I just hit some shots from a fixed position and focus the camera in on just me or should I video the whole court to show all my actions while I play a match?

thanks

For your own purposes, definitely view your strokes from all angles as that will be the only way you'll be able to spot the deficiencies in your technique thoroughly. That said, I've found the most useful angle to be from the rear in helping me spot not only my stroke mechanics, but also footwork, court movement, ball depth, ball placement, etc. Naturally, in order to see all this you'll have to video the entire court, or at least, as much as you can.

Bungalo Bill
10-23-2009, 08:57 AM
I want to post some video to get some feedback on my strokes.

What is the best angle and place to put the camera? From behind? From the side or angle? I am guessing about shoulder height?

Also, should I just hit some shots from a fixed position and focus the camera in on just me or should I video the whole court to show all my actions while I play a match?

thanks

I know this is obvious, but if you can afford a tripod, that could help a lot. I could be wrong about that but it makes sense to me.

boojay
10-23-2009, 09:16 AM
Oh yes, tripod is a definite must. You can even get a cheap one for like $10-20 that more than does the job. I've never tried those flexible tripods before. They look pretty useful as you can always mount them on the fence. I'm not sure how easy it is to do, but you could get some interesting rear angles with that particular tripod.

amx13
10-23-2009, 09:18 AM
Depends on what you want to accomplish. If you want to check out flaws in your strokes, a tripod is a must. You can set your camera near you and tape yourself from different angles (side, front, etc) and see what you are doing wrong.

If you play a match, I would say get the camera as high as possible and try to get both players in the frame, that way you can check out you strategies, shot depth and selection, etc.

NotAtTheNet
10-23-2009, 10:01 AM
I've never tried those flexible tripods before. They look pretty useful as you can always mount them on the fence. I'm not sure how easy it is to do, but you could get some interesting rear angles with that particular tripod.

Only trouble with those flexi ones is that I tried putting them on the back fence and with the wind (we have windscreens) you get alot of movement with the camera. Tripod is a must, i like taping from the back on a tripod as high up as i can get, and from the side at shoulder level.

aimr75
10-23-2009, 02:12 PM
i usually end up videoing from the net.. with the rear view, the courts i am on dont have alot of room from the back so half my body ends up being chopped out if i stand anywhere behind the base line, which is annoying

Ken Honecker
10-24-2009, 12:28 AM
What would be the best angle for taping ones sorry serve?

Mike Cottrill
10-24-2009, 12:26 PM
What would be the best angle for taping ones sorry serve?

The best angles are at least three:
The Front, Left and Right side
The back and court view are optional.

The best is if you take the angles and then sync them into one clip. This can be done with free software. Sometimes it is hard to see certain flaws from one angle. When different views are synchronized and stepped frame by frame, one can see what is going on with the stroke weather is it is forehands, backhands or serves. High speed video makes it even better.

Moz
10-24-2009, 12:40 PM
Covered in whipped cream with the webcam at groin height.

Bungalo Bill
10-25-2009, 09:07 AM
Oh yes, tripod is a definite must. You can even get a cheap one for like $10-20 that more than does the job. I've never tried those flexible tripods before. They look pretty useful as you can always mount them on the fence. I'm not sure how easy it is to do, but you could get some interesting rear angles with that particular tripod.

Flexible tripods? Seriously? I had no idea they made those? Do you have a link so I can take a look?

How are your strokes coming along boojay? Havent seen anything from you in awhile.

Bungalo Bill
10-25-2009, 09:08 AM
Depends on what you want to accomplish. If you want to check out flaws in your strokes, a tripod is a must. You can set your camera near you and tape yourself from different angles (side, front, etc) and see what you are doing wrong.

If you play a match, I would say get the camera as high as possible and try to get both players in the frame, that way you can check out you strategies, shot depth and selection, etc.

That is good advice.

WildVolley
10-25-2009, 09:43 AM
Get a tripod and shoot side and back views as the primary shots when looking at technique. Make sure to get your whole body in the shot in most cases.

The best known of the flexible tripods is the Gorilla Pod. Here's a link. http://joby.com/ These are good if you have a chainlink fence without a screen on it.

boojay
10-27-2009, 01:41 PM
Flexible tripods? Seriously? I had no idea they made those? Do you have a link so I can take a look?

Something like this (http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3296/2340923913_ac107c4b07.jpg)? Or this (http://drh2.img.digitalriver.com/DRHM/Storefront/Company/ekconsus/images//products/EKN036155/0900688a80bc5f6f/0900688a80bc5f6f_EKN036155_view1_645x370.jpg)? I've never tried one myself, but many electronics stores are packaging them with digicams during the holidays these last few years.


How are your strokes coming along boojay? Havent seen anything from you in awhile.

Thanks for asking, BB. I've made a startling discovery recently that I might not be right-handed as I originally thought. I'm actually left-handed (when writing), but I play righty. I've been corresponding in-depth via email with aimr75 (fellow poster on TT) over the past week, who has a similar game to mine and eerily similar circumstances as well (he's left-handed, but plays right), about this issue.

In short, I was able to pick up a racquet with my left hand and swing what I believe to be a more technically sound stroke than my right side, as frustrating as that revelation was, it's been more of a struggle using my left side to teach my right side, trying to get rid of all the bad habits I've been accumulating. I'm making progress one step at a time, but at the moment I'm nowhere near where I want to be. It definitely has been a while since my last video, but before I post one of myself, I want to make sure I'm at my absolute best and hitting the way I want to so in a reproducible fashion so that any advice from you (or anyone else) will have its greatest impact.

wihamilton
10-27-2009, 01:54 PM
As other have said, tripod is a must. Ideally, the camera should be around shoulder / head level.

Equally as important is configuring the camera properly. Film outside on a sunny day if possible and set the shutter speed pretty high (500+ if possible) -- that allows you to freeze frame w/out a blurry image. Keep in mind that many cheap cameras don't allow you to control the shutter speed.

Make sure you frame the shot properly. Here is an example of shot that could be framed better --

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KBQ4rdiAGTY

Notice all the "extra" room around the player? That's wasted space. Here's what you should be aiming for --

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ImeQaAyFPc

In that video we're tracking Federer -- if you can get someone to operate the tripod (in that video we actually used a monopod) and follow you around that would be ideal. If you can't get someone to track you you'll have to widen up the shot a little bit, like we've done here --

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yPCY1PNAYqE

Having someone (or a ball machine) feed the ball in the same spot makes things easier to frame. Rallying = more difficult. So I'd recommend trying to create a control environment when filming your strokes.

Bungalo Bill
10-27-2009, 02:17 PM
Something like this (http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3296/2340923913_ac107c4b07.jpg)? Or this (http://drh2.img.digitalriver.com/DRHM/Storefront/Company/ekconsus/images//products/EKN036155/0900688a80bc5f6f/0900688a80bc5f6f_EKN036155_view1_645x370.jpg)? I've never tried one myself, but many electronics stores are packaging them with digicams during the holidays these last few years.

I had no idea. Wow, learning something new everyday. That first one is excellent!!!! Need to get one of those.

Thanks for asking, BB. I've made a startling discovery recently that I might not be right-handed as I originally thought. I'm actually left-handed (when writing), but I play righty. I've been corresponding in-depth via email with aimr75 (fellow poster on TT) over the past week, who has a similar game to mine and eerily similar circumstances as well (he's left-handed, but plays right), about this issue.

In short, I was able to pick up a racquet with my left hand and swing what I believe to be a more technically sound stroke than my right side, as frustrating as that revelation was, it's been more of a struggle using my left side to teach my right side, trying to get rid of all the bad habits I've been accumulating. I'm making progress one step at a time, but at the moment I'm nowhere near where I want to be. It definitely has been a while since my last video, but before I post one of myself, I want to make sure I'm at my absolute best and hitting the way I want to so in a reproducible fashion so that any advice from you (or anyone else) will have its greatest impact.

Interesting. I am sure people have gone your path. Obviously, not many or we would have a lot more questions. I actually learned how to golf righthanded because they were the only clubs around. One day, I would like to try it lefthanded. I am lefthanded and leftfooted in everything else. So, I am a very dominant lefthander all the way!

Well, since you are sort of relearning, for the forehand, just follow those four easy steps. You can't go wrong with those and those four steps are how the "modern" forehand is being hit. I don't know if I would venture out to the WW unless you are using a Western grip. However, I am one that does not advise using the Western grip anyway. I support it, wouldn't dish it, but if I have a shot at teaching someone, I am one that starts people in the SW grip. Up to you.

I can't remember if you are a onehander or twohander? I think you are a twohander. So, the recommendation would be the same four steps for the backhand side as you are doing for the forehand side. Easy right? Yeah, until we get to the serve. Uh oh!!! :)

Serve, well, got to see your motion and we have written plenty on the serve as well as volleys.

It is really all about coordination, ball judgement, timing, and developing your power and consistency. So, workouts, court drills, technique drills, etc...

You can do it!! And please say hi to Aimr75. Post a video sometime and let's take a look and see how you are progressing. Maybe others want to follow in your footsteps.

tribunal4555
10-27-2009, 03:41 PM
Something like this (http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3296/2340923913_ac107c4b07.jpg)? Or this (http://drh2.img.digitalriver.com/DRHM/Storefront/Company/ekconsus/images//products/EKN036155/0900688a80bc5f6f/0900688a80bc5f6f_EKN036155_view1_645x370.jpg)? I've never tried one myself, but many electronics stores are packaging them with digicams during the holidays these last few years.



Thanks for asking, BB. I've made a startling discovery recently that I might not be right-handed as I originally thought. I'm actually left-handed (when writing), but I play righty. I've been corresponding in-depth via email with aimr75 (fellow poster on TT) over the past week, who has a similar game to mine and eerily similar circumstances as well (he's left-handed, but plays right), about this issue.

In short, I was able to pick up a racquet with my left hand and swing what I believe to be a more technically sound stroke than my right side, as frustrating as that revelation was, it's been more of a struggle using my left side to teach my right side, trying to get rid of all the bad habits I've been accumulating. I'm making progress one step at a time, but at the moment I'm nowhere near where I want to be. It definitely has been a while since my last video, but before I post one of myself, I want to make sure I'm at my absolute best and hitting the way I want to so in a reproducible fashion so that any advice from you (or anyone else) will have its greatest impact.

I'm the opposite of you. I hit and write with my right hand, but I shoot a basketball with either left or right (about even), I kick soccer balls about even, and I, for reasons unknown, use my left hand for ping pong and badminton.

Oh, and I actually shoot left handed in paintball, too.

boojay
10-28-2009, 01:26 AM
Interesting. I am sure people have gone your path. Obviously, not many or we would have a lot more questions. I actually learned how to golf righthanded because they were the only clubs around. One day, I would like to try it lefthanded. I am lefthanded and leftfooted in everything else. So, I am a very dominant lefthander all the way!

Well, since you are sort of relearning, for the forehand, just follow those four easy steps. You can't go wrong with those and those four steps are how the "modern" forehand is being hit. I don't know if I would venture out to the WW unless you are using a Western grip. However, I am one that does not advise using the Western grip anyway. I support it, wouldn't dish it, but if I have a shot at teaching someone, I am one that starts people in the SW grip. Up to you.

I can't remember if you are a onehander or twohander? I think you are a twohander. So, the recommendation would be the same four steps for the backhand side as you are doing for the forehand side. Easy right? Yeah, until we get to the serve. Uh oh!!! :)

Serve, well, got to see your motion and we have written plenty on the serve as well as volleys.

It is really all about coordination, ball judgement, timing, and developing your power and consistency. So, workouts, court drills, technique drills, etc...

You can do it!! And please say hi to Aimr75. Post a video sometime and let's take a look and see how you are progressing. Maybe others want to follow in your footsteps.

I'm hoping to get something up before the end of the year, but unfortunately with all the "re-learning" I'm doing right now, I'm not hitting very well (to the frustration of my hitting partner even though he says I'm hitting fine, though I'm sure he's just being polite).

Actually, I'm a one-hander with an extreme eastern, slowly migrating to an eastern forehand. I've always done sports right-handed (i.e. basketball, volleyball, baseball, tennis, etc.) throughout my life and only recently am discovering that I might be more coordinated left-handed. In spite of that, I want to continue playing right-handed. I suppose I've been getting away with playing with the "wrong" hand/arm with pure physicality, athleticism, and speed alone over the years, which I'm realizing can only get you so far before you need proper technique in order to get to the next level. This applies to all sports, not just tennis. It's been a humbling discovery and one which I'm prepared to face head on.

Part of me wonders what would've happened if I started out left-handed. Who knows, maybe someday I'll decide being right-handed can only get me so far and start all over again. I hope not, but I won't rule it out.

I'm the opposite of you. I hit and write with my right hand, but I shoot a basketball with either left or right (about even), I kick soccer balls about even, and I, for reasons unknown, use my left hand for ping pong and badminton.

Oh, and I actually shoot left handed in paintball, too.

Well, not quite opposite, but definitely just as strange ;). I write lefty, play tennis righty, shoot a basketball with either hand, but my left-handed form is better (I'm realizing now) although I've always played righty, throw and catch a ball righty (but my left throwing motion is improving), not sure which foot I would prefer to kick a soccer ball, I play ping pong better left-handed, but again, choose to play righty, snowboard goofy, high jump lefty, long jump righty, and for the most part, do most activities that require strength with my right hand, and delicate activities with my left hand.

When I first picked up a guitar, I naturally held it left-handed, but since no one else in my class was doing it, I ended up learning it right-handed (that was 12 years ago). I hope they dissect my brain someday and figure out what's wrong with me. These days I become more and more confused when I write because naturally, I want to pick up a pen with my left because that's what I've been doing all my life, but more and more often I'm starting to write with my right (especially if I'm on the phone because, you guessed it, I hold the phone with my left hand). I can't hold the phone very long in my right arm because it's too muscular and tight, therefore circulation gets cut off and it becomes uncomfortable when I'm on the phone for an extended period of time.

boojay
10-28-2009, 01:34 AM
Oh, and BB, here's the thread (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=293662) I started on the whole left-hand/right-hand conflict for your interest. I figured it wouldn't appeal to most of the population because I'd imagine for the most part people aren't confused as to whether or not they're right-handed or left-handed as I appear to be.

chalkflewup
10-28-2009, 01:45 AM
Check out www.ultimateprocompare.com for some interesting video technology. I like it better than dartfish because they do all the video work for you.

P.S. I don't work for this company.

Bungalo Bill
10-28-2009, 03:15 PM
There is a very easy to use, portable fence-mounted camera support system (see mytennistools.com) that can be put on the back of the fence, more for analyzing strategy, or on the side fence for looking at strokes . It can even be threaded through the net itself to give an interesting view of one's net play.

You might check it out.....

That is excellent!