Ready for the opening tip? Before you lace up the shoes, you need to make sure the foundation of your coaching workflow — how you film — is on solid ground.
First things first. How are you going to film? You’ve got a few options:
- Hudl Focus — The benefits are manifold. Everything you record on this hands-free smart camera comes in HD quality, lets you choose your preferred angle, and uploads instantly to your Hudl account. Installation usually takes less than an hour, and the device can be controlled from any iOS or Android mobile device.
- iPad or iPhone — Coaches like how fast this gets their video online. But to upload live, you’ll need a good WiFi connection.
- Handheld camera — These generally have better zoom, quality and storage capabilities than a mobile device.
Whatever you choose, these tips and tricks will make sure you have the best vantage point, workflow and accessories to record the clearest video. This will have a big impact on your post-game review and ability to create highlights, especially if you plan to tag stats afterwards or send your video to Hudl Assist.
Recording with a Hudl Focus camera
Determine your install location. Hudl Focus requires a high center court mounting location. This handy guide helps you get it in the perfect spot. Installing the hands-free smart camera is simple and takes less than an hour.
Do a test recording at a practice or scrimmage. Before your first game, test your setup by recording an entire practice or scrimmage. This is the ideal way to try out your hardware and train the person behind the camera on how to get the best video.
Add your schedule. Focus automatically records all your home games, so be sure to keep your schedule accurate with the correct date, time and event details. This really is a smart camera — it knows how to overlap events and upload games under the right schedule event and team. The device begins recording 15 minutes before start time and will record for 3 hours unless it’s stopped or extended in the Focus app. These steps will show you how to do it on the fly.
Set up your broadcast or livestream. With Hudl Focus, you can stream directly to YouTube, but also send your video to any broadcast software that accepts video through an IP feed. Whichever route you go, make sure you do a test run before your first game. Use these resources to ensure your Focus livestream goes off without a hitch.
Have a plan for away games. Do your away opponents have Focus? Ask them to exchange with you. If your league has agreed to share all game films, that saves you the hassle of recording on the road. And if your opponent doesn’t have Focus, confirm where the best place will be for your crew to set up.
Game Day Tips
Ensure your schedule’s up to date.
Was this game rescheduled? Make sure your Focus device is ready to record.
Double-check the status of your Focus camera.
You can check the status of your camera by looking at the lights on the front of your device, or by checking for warnings:
- White light — Your camera’s powered on and ready to record.
- Yellow light — Your camera might have network issues.
- Red light — Something deeper that’ll need Hudl Support’s help.
Our experts are always readily available to chat. Locate your Hudl Support phone number under settings in the Hudl Focus app.
Share your livestream link with fans.
There’s so many ways to get the word out. We suggest sharing the link to your YouTube channel or livestream platform via email and your school’s Facebook and Twitter accounts.
End the recording when the game’s over.
Your camera will automatically stop recording after three hours. But if your game ends early, you can stop the recording manually in the Hudl Focus app to avoid recording in an empty gym and having excess video uploaded.\
Recording with a Mobile Device or Camera
Choose your favorite device to record. An iPad or iPhone gets video online faster because it can upload live with a WiFi connection, while other coaches prefer a camera for the zoom, quality and storage capabilities.
But with a Hudl Focus, you won’t need to worry about any of that. Everything you record on the hands-free smart camera comes in HD quality, lets you choose your preferred angle, and uploads instantly to your Hudl account.
Choose your location. Whether it’s an iPad, camera or mobile device, be sure you’re setting up from a high vantage point that can capture the entire court without any obstructions. We recommend being near mid-court at least halfway up the bleachers.
Style your setup. Use a tripod to keep video stable, and check out lenses and cases to help you get the best picture if you’re using an iPad or iPhone. Use a wide-angle lens when you record close to the court and want to capture more in the picture. Or grab a telephoto lens if you’re recording farther away from the court.
Do a dry run at a practice or scrimmage. Before your first game, test your setup by recording an entire practice or scrimmage. This is the ideal way to try out your hardware and train the person behind the camera on how to get the best video.
Add your schedule in Hudl. Let’s face it — the possibility of postponements is very real during the winter. Keeping your schedule updated in Hudl lets your video crew stay on top of things.
Set up your broadcast or livestream. There are lots of options when it comes to livestreaming. Check out this livestreaming guide for best practices. Once you choose the platform that’s best for you, do a dry run to work out any kinks.
Check with away opponents on their filming setup. Do your away opponents have Focus? Ask them to exchange with you. If your league has agreed to share all game films, that saves you the hassle of recording on the road. And if your opponent doesn’t have Focus, understand their gym’s dimensions and where the best place will be for your crew to set up.
Game Day Tips
Set up at mid-court.
The best vantage point is mid-court, to the side of the scorer’s table. From that angle, your recording device will only have to rotate slightly, depending on where the action is.
Clear storage space.
Ideally, you’re going to want at least 2 – 3 GB free on your memory to make sure you capture the entire game.
Make sure your batteries are fully charged.
And be sure to bring an extra battery. If there are no outlets near your setup, an extra battery like this can be a lifesaver.
Bring a backup device.
Don’t risk missing the match because your camera or iPad suddenly died, crashed or ran out of storage space.
Get smooth video with a tripod.
No one wants to watch shaky video. Plus, the height of a tripod can help you reach the perfect vantage point, especially in a smaller gym.
Record the scoreboard.
Take quick scoreboard shots throughout the game, especially at the end of each quarter. Or simply include the scoreboard in your shot to make it easier to follow along. This will help our analysts as they tag and you as you review.
Capture referee signals and jersey numbers.
Keep the referee in the frame so you can record their signals throughout the game. Being next to the scorer’s table will keep you from missing the action.
Go easy on the zoom.
Stay far enough away to get both teams without using the zoom too often — you’ll thank yourself during review.
Only pause at timeouts.
To keep up with the flow of the game, and catch all substitutions, only pause at timeouts or between quarters. Even if there’s a call in question, keep recording so you (and our analysts) can catch the outcome.
Share how to view your broadcast or live stream.
However you typically inform your followers, be it email or social, make sure they have the link to your game.