Sunday, 19 December 2010

My meeting with Memotion Ltd - could equestrian world have finally found an affordable way to professional filming system?

A few weeks ago I received an email from the owners of a new, exciting start up company - Memotionsports Ltd. They wrote to introduce their product and we arranged for a meeting a week later.
How I wish I had a venue of my own to get Memotionsports involved in straight away! The product is potentially excellent and I thought they deserve some additional publicity so here we go.

I will let Memotionsports tell you first what they are all about: motion...emotion

memotionsports™ is a video recording and editing service aimed broadly to the world of sports people and in this case, the hot spot being the scope of Equine and dressage.

Our system records the relationship of a rider to their horse, focusing on the movement and posture of the event. The recording is achieved through multiple cameras located around the arena, capturing all the important actions and this footage can be replayed and benefited from at a later stage or be used for training purposes. memotionsports™ captures the equestrian experience of you and your horse rather than focusing on close-ups of the rider so that your skills in handling the animal can be enjoyed.

We understand that impulsion, suppleness and rhythm are important factors within this sport and hence provide a mechanism for those performance criteria to be recorded and viewed in a user friendly way.
It is a straightforward and simple process to create a professional quality video. This can be viewed instantaneously for immediate feedback or we offer a post production editing service. This service will extract the key sections of your riding session; enhance the relevant aids through creative techniques and produce a professional film that you can be proud of. This is for you to keep and can be used for seeking further training or as a souvenir for your special event.

Small Print

Users seek our service in order to have a nice memory of them performing at sports. We take data protection and privacy issues very seriously and memotionsports™ have secure processes in place to protect that. We guarantee that the recordings will not be made available outside of your specified network without your permission.

All recorded footage is stored securely on our computer servers and we do not disclose the content to anyone who are not memotionsports™ approved organisations. From time to time we may use some recorded films as promotional material but only after we have received written confirmation from the owner that we can do so. For your added peace of mind, we are legally bound by the Data Protection Act which sets out specific controls for the handling of your personal data.

For and on behalf of memotion™ Ltd.

If this information intrigued you enough I suggest you email memotionsports and ask for a nice little PowerPoint presentation they have :) It has a lot more insights into how the system works including photos of proposed set up and the way the revenue can be raised.

I am looking forward to further working with the company to help them build more contacts in the industry. I think the concept is fantastic and exactly what our sport is missing on at the lower levels (and higher ones too actually).
The TV coverage of Equestrian Sports is very unlikely to improve any time soon and in my opinion there are a few things we need now:

1) A way to provide the coaches, riders, training centre owners, parents of young riders and competitors with a long lasting, visual record of training sessions, lessons, clinics.
Such records are not only highly informative but are also a powerful motivational tool. They are also a relatively inexpensive way to learn the skills.

2) A way to extend the exposure of the sponsors of equestrian events. I don't know the statistics but it's safe to assume the exposure is low and the attraction even lower. Companies in general don't see the benefits of sponsoring equestrian events unless they have national or international rank.
The thing is the horse sports need the keen sponsors at lower levels to pump the energy into the industry. Having banners around the arena on the day of an event is great but they are gone the day after. If there were videos of such events made for rider's families, friends, fans(?), breeders of the horses taking part etc and certainly for riders themselves so they can post them on their websites (as many amateur riders now have some great ones) the exposure is immediately extended and immortalized.

3) A tool for coaches to monitor the progress of their riders. As I'm sure many of my riders know I am a big fan of video feedback. There is no question about the benefits and educational value for the rider.
The videos are, however, also a very useful tool for the coaches. If I see a rider every week for 3 years a lot of the things that shout at me in the first few months become less and less noticeable. You start making allowances for the rider and perhaps close an eye on this and that.
Looking through video footage over months' time is very helpful in making sure what I teach is helpful to that particular rider. Is the rider improving or is he/she still at the same level as a few months ago?
It's much easier to assess performance in competition riders where the judges give their feedback or where you have more double clears etc
In a non-competitive, training environment the stagnation in the progress is much more likely.

4) A way for trainers to monitor the horses they school.
How many times did you think: I wish I had someone to film me today? Perhaps you wanted to show your horse's owners how great he/she is schooling. Yes, you can have a great feel on the day and be sure the horse is getting better but you have no visual reference, no way of appraising your own riding, seat, horse's way of going from the place the judge will later look at you.
Lessons are expensive but if you are serious about improving you must have "eyes on the ground". Good video system can give you the opportunity to monitor your training, sharpen your training skills and an eye for detail. You ride the horse so you know how it feels. If you can "see the feel" you not only getting better as a trainer but as a teacher/coach too.

I think it would help enormously with planning the training. For example if I could monitor my own progress by myself on day-to-day basis and attend a few days long intensive training with a pro (like those organised by Anna Ross-Davies at Altogether Equestrian ) every two-three months or so, it would create a way more affordable training system.

5) A tool for trainers/coaches to show their methods to wider public. If you move to an area you don't know, yard full of riders you don't know and you have to find an instructor what do you do? It's easy to say you would go with "word of mouth" but this still pretty much means blind testing. Top names in the area are likely to be known but not everyone wants and needs to have lessons with a "top rider" or "top trainer". If local instructors have web videos showing their clinics/lessons etc you could watch them and decide who is likely to suit you and your horse.

6) A tool for BHS Training Centres to monitor progress of trainee instructors and help them progress. Many young people I have taught for Preliminary Teaching Test exams in London, Surrey and Berkshire have two main problems a) they are worried about what to say and when and how will they sound, will they be heard by their riders b) confidence in the arena whilst teaching. If you can see what you do and how you sound you can correct many things way quicker than by doing guess work.

7) A tool for Virtual Coaching. Part of Aspire Equestrian Riding Academy training plans is a service whereby a rider can submit an unlimited amount of riding videos from when they ride at home for instructor's feedback. It means that if they only come for lessons/training once every two weeks they can still stay on top of the training plan and monitor their progress. Everybody loves the idea but many have one primary problem: no one to film them! Not everybody has a non-working parent or a ever present helper who can come with a camera and film every time they ride. I want them to be able to submit those videos! :)

8) A tool for Riding Centres, Riding Schools, Competition Centres and Livery Yards to promote their sponsors, services, shows, riders, horses you name it!

9) A memory, something tangible to take with you after you had a time of your life and mum, dad, friend, BBC wasn't there!

There are probably more points I could come up with but I don't want to make this post too long ;)
Come on riding centres - contact memotionsports and set the wheels in motion!

I am hoping for some exciting collaboration in between Aspire Equestrian Academy and memotionsports in the near future. I have now agreed a feature for the Academy in a top selling monthly equestrian magazine and it will require video footage so watch this space...! :)



memotion said...

Thank you Wiola for writing such an indepth review of our system and all of the points you mentioned are perfectly true. I did approach Wiola a while ago singling her out as a genuinely passionate advocate of everything Equestrian. She really knows her stuff and we’re happy to be able to support her in advancing the exposure of equestrian events across all levels. She was really excited about our video service and how it can help riders improve their performance through video feedback. And what makes it really compelling for users is that it produces a polished result but yet is affordable to be used on a regular basis.

We’re currently working with some Equestrian venues, generating a lot of content but are always looking for additional partners. So if you know a Centre that could benefit from the memotion system then let them know about us and we’ll get in touch with them.

We’re building up a community of like minded people, who love their sport and it’s great to have strong supporters on board. Through greater promotion and increased awareness of the sport, we would hope that the bigger brands start investing more and ultimately it’s all the riders that benefit from better facilities and venues to train from.
You can help us by visiting our memotionsports page on FaceBook and becoming a fan. Or alternatively if you’d just like some more info or have a question about what we’re doing then just drop me a mail at

Looking forward to working with Wiola on her new training programme aided by memotionsports video.



Unknown said...

Dear Wah, you are very welcome. I hope many owners contact you and more riders will be able to benefit from the videos.
All the best and looking forward to the New Year!

All the best,

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