Gearing up for production

We have been frantically gearing up for production of our documentary about snowboarding in Japan.  When shooting footage overseas with a small 1 or 2 man crew you need a healthy compromise between having just the right amount of equipment to produce a quality production while not over-burdening yourself with having to lug a heavy kit all around the world.  Keeping it simple and light will mean you avoid excess baggage charges from the airlines, but you’ll also be agile enough to chase the stories as they present themselves throughout your journey.

At a minimum what you will need to look at taking with you is:

  • A quality HD camcorder
  • A filter kit
  • Wide angle lens
  • A quality shotgun microphone
  • A lav microphone kit
  • A mixer
  • 2-3 lights with various filters / cookies
  • A rain cover (depending on weather)
  • A quality portable tripod
  • Recording media (SD cards etc.)
  • A stabilisation device for hand-held recording (see www.camcaddie.com)
  • All cables, spare batteries etc.
  • Padded bags for camera and equipment

We recently took delivery of our Cam Caddie.  It’s a cradle for your hand-held camcorder and is made from light weight plastic which is very strong and won’t tip your baggage allowance over the top.  The cam caddie allows you to get action shots on the fly while maintaining maximum stabilisation.  It’s he perfect device for getting awesome footage of snowboarders carving up the pow ;)

cam caddie

www.camcaddie.com

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Useful Japanese words and phrases for use while at the snow

  • Chair lift = Lifuto
  • Let’s go skiing = Suki ni ikimashyo
  • Snowboard = sunoboodo
  • Skis= suki
  • powder = powda
  • avalanche = nadare
  • I saw an avalanche = nadare o mita
  • Lunatic = Kichigai
  • I am a ski-freak/dork/lunatic = watashi wa suki-kichigai
  • ice = koori
  • Fresh/uncooked/(draft) beer = Nama
  • Beer = Biru
  • Large/Big = Dai
  • Cold = Samui
  • (I am) cold = (Watashi wa) samui desu
  • Steep (pitch/slope) = Kyuu
  • Literal- Steep slope ski(ing) (wa) fun is = Kyuu shamen suki (wa) tanoshi desu.
  • Vacation/holiday/break/day off = yasumi
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Japan 2009

Around Otaru, Hokkaido:

DSC02710 DSC02722 DSC02721 DSC02720 DSC02715
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Snowboarding Fitness Routine

In order to get the most out of your snow trip to Japan, it’s important to have a good base fitness level prior to going.  This will allow you to spend as much time as possible in the pow which of course is the main reason you’re there.

The main areas to work on are cardio, legs and core body strength conditioning. Below is a suggested 30 minute workout routine to help you reach your snow fitness goals:

Warm Up: it is vital to prepare your body for physical activity before getting stuck into full blown training. A 5 minute warm up at about 60% effort is recommended. This can consist of jogging on the spot, star jumps (or Jumping Jacks as their also known), butt kicks, high knees and a few quick shuttle runs will be an ideal start.

Circuit 1:

  • Squats x 15-20 reps
  • Crunches x 15-20 reps
  • Star Jumps – 1 minute @80% effort (complete three rounds, then rest for 1 minute before starting the next circuit).

Circuit 2:

  • Lunges x 15-20 each leg
  • Push Ups x 15-20 reps
  • 20m Shuttle Runs – 1 minute @ 80% effort (complete three rounds, then rest for 1 minute before starting the next circuit).

Circuit 3:

  • Step Ups x 15-20 each leg
  • Cycle Crunches x 30-40
  • Burpees – 1 minute @ 80% effort (complete three rounds, then begin the Cool Down).

Cool Down:

This is as important as the warm up routine that many people overlook. Stretching muscles for around 30 seconds can greatly help your recovery. Areas to stretch are:

  • hamstrings
  • quads
  • calves
  • glutes
  • chest
  • triceps

This routine should take you about 30 minute to complete plus cool down. Done 2-3 time pers week over 4-6 wk period, this will give you a sound fitness base and make your trip so much more enjoyable.

*Note that if you have any concerns about undertaking physical activity, you should consult your doctor before hand.

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Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

We would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas and all the best for the festive season.

We look forward to bringing you all the best that snowboarding in Japan has to offer in 2010.

Stay safe and remember, live life to the fullest!

Iao & Leroy.

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Snowboard In Japan – the doco

During this February’s trip to Furano in Japan, Iao and I will be making a feature length documentary about snowboarding and Japanese culture.  We will be covering topics such as:

  • Tokyo
  • Sapporo Ice festival
  • Ice climbing
  • Ice fishing
  • Snow sledding
  • Snow mobiling
  • Snowboarding
  • Japanese cuisine
  • Japanese drinking culture
  • Karaoke

 
 cinema-banner

The finished documentary will be an entertaining insight into the Japanese culture, and will highlight the diverse cultural and sporting pursuits you can enjoy during a winter getaway to Japan.

Part of our production plan is to interview as many and varied interesting local Japanese people and fellow travellers as we can on our journey.  Our conversations with these people will allow our viewers to see Japan though the eyes of a wide cross-section of people.

If you live in Sapporo, Furano or the surrounding areas or plan to be there in the first half of February 2010 and would like to be included in the documentary, then please drop us a line by adding a comment to this post.  We’ll be in touch.  Alternatively if you know of anybody that would mak a good candidate to be included in our documentary, then please pass on their details or direct them to this website to ge in touch with us.

Candidates we speak with on camera will be engaged in polite, open conversation on any interesting topics about Japan, snowboarding and their life and experiences.  This is a chance for locals and other travellers to tell their story, express their views and be included as part of this exciting project.

Leroy.

P.S. To get in touch with us, click the title of this post (Snowboard In Japan – the doco), then scroll to the bottom and in the ‘Leave a Comment’ section, type your comment, name and email and click ‘Submit Comment’.  We’ll get back to you ASAP.

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Another trip to Trigger Brothers

I took another trip to Trigger Brothers in St Kilda on Saturday to try on some boots and bindings they had transferred from their Frankston store.

The boots fit me excellently, so I decided to purchase a new Libtech board and Burton wheelie bag while I was there.  ;)   Libtech boards are based on banana board technology.  The way the board curves end to end make them easy to ride and excellent for carving up the pow.

That’s me almost done for the upcoming trip.  I still need to invest in a new helmet and goggles, and possible a few more thermals.

Leroy.

photo8 photo9 photo10
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A trip to Trigger Brothers to select gear

Last Saturday we booked in a couple of hours to purchase some new snowboard gear for the trip in February 2010.  I met Iao at Trigger Brothers in St. Kilda at 12:30pm and we browsed the store for bargains.  Being the start of summer in Australia there were some great bargains on 2009 winter stock.

I had a full upgrade to my entire kit in mind, including:

  • Jacket
  • Pants
  • Boots
  • Bindings
  • Board
  • Goggles
  • Gloves
  • Snowboard bag
  • Thermals
  • Helmet

I managed to pick up a new jacket, pants and gloves for 50% off retail, and am going back next Saturday to try on some boots and bindings they are having transferred from another store.

Leroy.

SnowGear

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