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Video analysis is a staple of basketball at the elite level of the game. Case in point: Hudl provides analysis solutions to all 30 teams in the NBA. But analysis is just as important at a semi-professional level, too. To learn more, we spoke to Italian basketball club P.G.S Don Bosco Crocetta Torino, who play in Serie C Gold Basket league and are devoted to the development of youth athletes.  

Don Bosco have only just begun using advanced video analysis which puts their Head Coach Claudio Maino in a strong position to comment on how it has had an immediate effect on the club - firstly in terms of time-efficiency using the Hudl Focus video capture system

The Hudl Focus fully-automated camera installed in the Don Bosco gym captures video in high quality and follows the action without a camera person, eliminating the need for manual capture processes.

“Hudl Focus has been a game changer and the first reason is that now we have clear videos where before we didn’t,” said Maino. “We do not lose any frames, which is very important and when you have to record games on your own, you typically have someone who actually would like to see the game - so if you are not using a professional cameraman you will lose some of the action. This is especially important when you are in the final minutes of the game and playing point to point. Now there is no possibility of losing any frames.”

Aside from their semi-professional squad, Don Bosco have a range of age group teams from Under-19 level down to basketball beginners. Freeing up a cameraperson by using Hudl Focus allows that resource to be used elsewhere in the coaching setup. 

“Our club has a lot of teams – we start from very small kids until we reach the first team and if we just look at the Over-13 age group categories we have eight or nine teams so it would always be very difficult for us to find someone to be there and film any of the games,” says Maino. “But now that person can do something different. When you are not a professional-level team and the coaches are volunteers it’s important to let them be able to work with the players directly.”

An example of automatic tracking from the Hudl Focus footage camera inside the Don Bosco playing facility.

Recently Don Bosco has decided to focus as much on its youth development as its first team. “We started thinking we could improve the quality of our program by achieving higher standards for our kids,” says Maino. “Last year we started using Hudl Focus for our first team and our higher young athletes, so basically our Under-19 and Under-17 categories. But now we have split our accounts and use two. The first one is completely devoted to our top teams, Under-19 and Under-17s, and then we have another account for the other teams.”

The speed of the service has seen a direct improvement among the players and coaching staff. “The process is so simple,” adds Maino. “You can integrate Hudl Focus with the Hudl platform and therefore automatically at the end of the game your videos move into the platform. So within 30 minutes of the end of the game you have a film with perfect footage and perfect quality.

“We share the videos in two ways. The first is inter-staff between coaches and administration. This can be done easily through tagging.

Secondly the athletes use a download link and we can use it to share videos, statistics and reports. We mostly share through WhatsApp and you can look very soon after a game. We are able to record and share the games in a very simple way.”

The same process using the previous manual filming system could take anything between five and ten hours, assuming everything ran smoothly, Maino points out. 

“It was previously a very long and frustrating process,” he adds. “We did not have a database with all the games of a specific team or the entire club. The process was to record a video with your own camera. Once you had it you had to share with any coach connected to the game and that coach would then have the duty of downloading the video on his own personal computer before he could share it with the guys. It took a long time!”

Hudl Focus footage is exported to the Hudl online platform where coaches and players can interact via feedback, clips and drawings.

High-quality video combines well with statistical output for any team needing to provide in-depth analysis to their players. Hudl Focus combines well with Hudl Assist to cover both of these bases. 

Simply submit video footage to Hudl Assist and within 24 hours a full game report is delivered, including fully tagged footage and key statistics.

Coach Maino makes the point that it’s important to differentiate between the basic and advanced statistics function to get the most from the system: “We typically focus on basic statistics until we need more information on how the game is going. On the one hand you have the performance of a single athlete and you can track it by basic statistics, and this is simple. 

But on the other hand, when you have a combination of players and you want to see how well they are integrating in a game, advanced statistics are much more useful in this area. If you need further information, then advanced statistics are way more smart.”

A shot chart produced as part of a Hudl Focus basketball report.
Statistics chart produced as part of a Hudl Focus basketball report.

From those advanced statistics, players can improve different aspects of their game. “We can directly share that playlist with the guys and when they can immediately see for themselves they have the chance to go out and do it better on the court. 

The possibility of improving the level of our athletes is related directly to the chance of looking at what you are doing, how you are doing and then going out onto the court to improve,” says Maino.

Outside of performance analysis, Hudl Focus can be used to livestream games. This has been useful for allowing subscribers to support the club remotely and also for growing the presence of Don Bosco online.

“One tournament the club organized was streamed on YouTube and the club’s subscriber numbers increased six-fold in just one week,” said Maino. “From there, those subscribers sought out the club’s Instagram and Facebook channels, so numbers increased on those platforms too.

“Since we have started using it we have seen a rapid increase in terms of visualization and descriptions on the YouTube channel. If you have the chance to use Hudl Focus as a streaming service, then it’s a great opportunity.”

Capture and upload footage automatically without the need for a camera person - learn more about how Hudl Focus can save you time and take your basketball analysis to the next level

Want to get your basketball analysis delivered by our team of experts within 24 hours of your game? Check out Hudl Assist