Thanks to the lockdown, my sensei is planning to move all our classes online. We are aware that some things are not possible online (e.g. contact moves etc.). However, fine tuning kata and kihon might be possible with proper instruction.
Doing this live is hard since the sensei cannot handle the large number of students that come so we’re thinking of doing it asynchronously with recorded videos and having people respond with recorded videos of their own and occasional live classes. I wanted to know if anyone here has experience doing this and what platforms/tools they’d recommend.
Here are my specific problems
We’re planning to use recorded videos and would like to keep them private rather than put them on a public site like Youtube. I want to know if anyone has done this and if so, what platforms worked for them.
We’d also like to have a smaller set of live classes where the sensei can evaluate individual students. Zoom is what we’re planning to use here but if there are people with other experiences, it would be useful.
My instructor has been running classes using Zoom since the lockdown began in the UK (late March 2020). The classes haven’t been that large (no more than 20 people per session) and have been successful.
Obviously, they aren’t as good as a real class (he can only see our upper-body, most of the time), but it does help keep things ticking over. The main problems we have had are sound related; initially, my instructor was hard to hear until he used a bluetooth headset. Equally, if everyone is unmuted and talks at the same time, it is difficult to hear important things. The meeting host has the ability to mute everyone, which is handy.
If you’re worried about the class sizes, you could always split them into several classes. In normal circumstances, we have separate classes for juniors and adults; no reason why this should be the case for online classes, too.
Your asynchronous idea has merit, though I wouldn’t use it for everything. If a student has a specific question, they could take a video and submit it for review; otherwise, your sensei may become equally overloaded watching hours of student videos!
Zoom has worked quite well for us, though any well-known video conferencing tool should be equally capable. I’m also involved in Scouting in the UK and several groups are running online scouting using Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Webex, for instance.
To me, it looks like you and your instructor already have the right ideas and thoughts about online training; try something, get feedback, change something, try again. Repeat until normal training resumes!
I am a beginner. Is there any place where I can play online and improve my game? I know of sites like Chess.com but unfortunately you have to pay for them. My parents won’t allow me to spend money on it. What are the best free chess websites or apps?
The best completely free website I know of is Lichess. Personally, I use Chess.com. It’s free to play on, and many of the features it has can be used by anyone. However, to gain full access to the website (e.g. the video library), you do need to pay for a membership. It is relatively inexpensive though—$100 per year, which is equivalent to $8.33 per month. (Other membership options are even cheaper.)
Many people still prefer Lichess, and it does have the advantage that absolutely everything is free. Ultimately, I think the best way to answer your question is to try out everything:
Proprietary (to gain full access, you need to pay):
Note that even the chess websites that offer paid subscriptions often come with a money-back guarantee. If you’re organised enough to cancel your subscriptions, then you can pretty much trial everything before coming to a decision.