This is a loophole that I know will benefit a lot of dancers on their dance journey! Or anyone who records a lot of videos and always finds themselves needing extra space to store those videos! I’ve seen many students and instructors struggle with space on their phones to be able to record new videos.
When they reach their limit they have to delete their old videos to create new videos and the cycle continues. This may be becoming less of an issue as the storage space on devices is increasing more and more with each new phone that comes out. Having tons of dance videos on your phone also brings up another problem organizing those dance videos for future reference. This blog will help you with a solution to both of these annoying issues.
If you went to a class, workshops, weekender, festival, and/or took a private lesson; you invested irreplaceable time, energy, & money in those experiences, techniques, and lightbulb moments. Deleting them is like throwing your investment down the drain because as much as we think we are “never going to forget” we definitely can’t remember everything.
TLDR; Use Youtube to upload your videos for free with no storage limit. If you care to read about my mindset and workflow around getting the most out of the videos you record as a student or instructor, feel free to continue reading!
My main point of view in the blog is from a professional dance instructor, but I’m also a student and anyone who deals with a lot of videos can benefit from this blog.
The Pain Point
I’ve been heavily involved in the dance scene for the past 10 years, mostly known as an international urbankiz instructor, but I like to view myself as an entrepreneur in the dance world. One thing I strive to do with every private lesson is to record a recap lesson and a demo of us dancing for future reference for myself and for the students I work with. So as someone who wants to create repeated value for the students who choose to learn from me, I wanted to enhance the learning experience with learning from me. The repeated problem of seeing my students struggle with not having enough space on their phones led me to find ways to record the videos for them, especially for the students who were paying for packages of privates.
Without planning about the videos that you’ll need to record as a student or instructor, you will just have your phone, and no tripod, so you have to prop the phone on some surface and hope it gets the full-body view, as you will probably want to be in the video. Also, if your phone is also playing music, you can’t record a video and play music at the same time, so it’s another great reason to have a separate video recording device other than your phone.
Who should be responsible for recording the video after a private lesson? The instructor or the student?
Yes, it’s possible to let the student worry about recording their own videos, but there are 3 main advantages I see to going the extra mile to record the videos as a professional instructor.
1 - FUTURE LESSON PREP: As an instructor, if I don’t have the video I then have no record of the lesson and what we covered so I can’t see what we covered in the last lesson, I can’t prepare for the next lesson as well as I could. As a passionate instructor, I want to see my students grow, so it is in my best interest to document their journey of improvement and to prepare myself before each lesson!
2 - ADDED VALUE & CONVENIENCE: As an entrepreneur, I believe recording the video for the student taking the private offers value and convenience and that you can charge a higher price point since it’s one less thing they have to worry about with the lesson. Chances are their minds will be focused and full with the lightbulbs moments from the lesson anyway.
3 - FUTURE CONTENT: As a danceprenuer, private lessons are a major stream of income. Sharing videos of students working with me in private lessons on social media provides social proof that I’m available for privates, and I feel most students also enjoy seeing videos of themselves on social media showing their progress. Be sure to get permission from each student you plan on sharing social media from.
As I mentioned in advantage number 2, I feel the professional instructor who is desiring to create an awesome learning experience for their students along with repeat business in the long term should offer to record the videos for their students and charge accordingly for the additional expenses of the gear, and time to record and upload the videos after each lesson.
A question I’m currently pondering is how long should I host a video for any particular student?
When I travel to festivals or weekenders, I bring my tripod to ensure a good angle and height for the video recording. Today, I bring my DSLR camera (Canon M6 Mark II) with a nice wide-angle 16mm lens that provides awesome quality, and before I had this setup I recorded videos with my GoPro which is super lightweight, compact and has an excellent field of view.
Shameless Danceprenuer University Plug
Recently I’ve created a database where I keep track of all my private lesson income by the student, the number of private lessons they take, as well as a record of each private lesson where each video lives. It’s an extension of the Dancer’s Training Journal. I’ll share that Notion template as part of my upcoming Dancepreneur University course, be sure to join the email list if that interests you!
After The Lesson
So after you have recorded the video of your private lesson, you will probably have a file on a memory card. I personally go between two different 128 GB SD memory cards to make sure I always have a memory card ready to go. I also record the videos for my online membership site Learntokiz.com with the SD cards, and also for my YouTube channel, so I typically generate several GBs of video in a typical month.
If you recorded with a good angle and proper video settings you should be able to go straight from your memory card to Youtube, especially if it’s just for internal use between you and the student. If the student has bought a package of privates with me, I will create their own unlisted YouTube playlist that they will have access to. Unlisted means that YouTube will generate a link for the video but it’s not public on your main YouTube page, so only the people that have access to the link will be able to view the video.
As I mentioned at the beginning of the blog, the loophole that I found was that Youtube has no limit on the storage you upload to your account as of the time of me writing this blog. Before I was spending more and more $ each month incrementally on Google Drive, Dropbox, and iCloud as my storage needs grew.
Recording yourself is one of the most important habits you can create if you are serious about becoming a better dancer. I’m currently writing a blog series on the 5 Steps To Become A Better Dancer, check out steps one and two.
I’ve been nerding out on a personal knowledge management system called Building A Second Brain (BASB). If you’re interested in how to better handle the overwhelm of information living in today’s world, I recommend watching this video. In the course, a question that has resonated with me a lot is, “How can I make what I’m consuming right now easily rediscoverable for my future self?” This question can apply to lots of areas in your life, but for now let’s focus on dance and specifically, your dance video links.
So let’s say that you love this idea and you start implementing and uploading videos to YouTube, after 20 videos, you will have 20 YouTube links, I’ve found that the next pain point is organizing those links in a way that’s easy to access in the future. You can definitely Youtube playlists to help organize but when I did that I notice myself wanting to tag different aspects of the videos. FYI, I’m about to get a bit nerdy. I see you can tag any particular video by date, dance style, location, event, type of video (as in is this a private lesson, solo practice, etc.), and by the instructor you’re learning from; so many details!!
Since I had these ideas around the time I was taking the BASB course, I saw a lot of the members of the course had created their own custom Notion databases to help solve different problems they were facing. After a lot of YouTubing to study how Notion worked, this lead me to create my first Notion template, the Dancer’s Training Journal 1.0. I won’t go into a ton of details here but check out the article I wrote or YouTube video that goes into way more detail.
Video Editing for Social Media Promotion
Under the future content section above, one of the advantages I mentioned for recording the videos after private lessons for future content. In the dance world, social media really filled with dancers around the world showcasing their talents! These videos typically inspire other dancers to want to start dancing or level their own skills. I feel also taking time to showcase the journey of becoming a better dancer is also important, there’s a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes to grow as a dancer. I feel it’s important to show stumbles, mistakes, frustrations, etc. as we are all on our own journey.
Thinking in today’s world of Instagram & Facebook Reels, TikToks, Youtube Shorts, stories on multiple platforms combined with our ever-shortening attention spans it makes sense to create shorter vertical videos for these video formats. I’ve been a user of the Adobe Cloud platforms for years, Photoshop for flyers, Audition to edit audio for my podcasts, Premiere for video editing, and After Effects more recently for more complex video animations.
To take a horizontal 1920 X 1080 and create a square (1080 X 1080) or vertical (1080 X 1920) video that also follows the subject within the frame, Adobe has a very cool auto reframe feature that makes this pretty easy. To learn how to use this feature, I suggest watching this video. In the Dancepreneur University course, there will definitely be a section on content creation, so be sure to join the email list if you’re interested in that.
So this is my mindset/approach towards recording videos for my students who decide to take private lessons from me. Even if you aren’t an instructor I believe there’s a lot of value here for you as well to handle the ever-growing quantity of videos you record in your pursuit of becoming a better dancer.
If you have any other tools or tips of advice for video management feel free to send me a message! If I come across better tools or workflows I will update this blog as needed!
Thanks for taking the time to read my thoughts!