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 Post subject: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 12:12 am Post Number: #1 Post
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A reference has been added to the wiki for this rate/review thread

http://wiki.bowlingchat.net/wiki/index.php?title=Videos



If have watched, or listened to this DVD by Mark Baker, please take the time to rate it via the poll.


This is currently available through

http://markbakerbowling.com/

“THE SYSTEM”
Mark Baker (Author)



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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Tue Nov 04, 2014 6:10 pm Post Number: #2 Post
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I received the video over the weekend and was able to watch it. I'm definitely going to go back and view it again, but my initial impressions -

It's very helpful to have these types of concrete benchmarks to think about and strive for. They're fundamentally about accuracy and consistency, while improving speed and power. There are obviously other ways to get there, but these all make sense to me. The relationships between the ball and head/shoulder in the swing plane, the relationship between your head and feet at the key transitions (push away, pivot step, release). It's about being smooth, efficient and balanced throughout the approach and through the release. Avoiding small inconsistencies that rob energy and also cascade into other problems. Being able to identify, and then work towards hitting these benchmark positions seems like a good way to grow.

I have been using the Baker book for a while and the video builds on that while providing some concrete details for evaluating where you are now, and how to move forward. The book has helped me to be more balanced - to hit my timing spot and post my shots. I believe that has helped with carry and scoring. The 10 point system provides other key elements that I think will be helpful. It also includes a section on how to take video so that you can analyze your technique.

For me averaging 205+ and working hard to improve, I feel like I will get a lot of value out of it. I think it can most benefit intermediate bowlers, and perhaps people starting out who are really committed to the sport. Probably even more elite bowlers who might need some refinement or a sanity check on their timing and approach.

This is not a general purpose bowling video. No talk at all about shooting spares, lane transitions, oil patterns, equipment, league/tournament strategy, etc. Mark talks pretty fast, and at times I wish there was a bit more detail, but the content is good. I'd have liked to see more exchanges with the bowlers, like the one with Chris Barnes at the end - which I found very helpful. The production quality and overall presentation are very good. Some of the transitions are a bit too elaborate for me, but it's a well made piece of work.

There is a brief mention about release at the end, but it's essentially "I don't talk about release, because if you do these 10 things really well, the release will be there". I agree, but it's obviously not that simple. Releases and managing hand position (tilt and rotation) are key things to high level bowlers, but they're not going to be as useful if your fundamentals are not there. Once you can hit target with accuracy and power, then it's time to work on other aspects. I suspect we'll see additional books and videos, which is great - because I think these fill a need and provide a different way of looking at things.

Steve

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Wed Nov 05, 2014 4:52 pm Post Number: #3 Post
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Thanks Steve for taking the time to share your thoughts!

Quote:
Mark talks pretty fast

Mark had a few short videos on the Ebonite site and they are still out in youtube land.
I noticed that on those videos ( I don't have the DVD yet but intend to get it. I'm a hopeless information junky ...)

It's almost like Mark is so enthusiastic and full of wisdom, he can't wait to get it out!!!
One thing is for certain, it's a good thing our ears don't blink. :)

Thanks again.

Take care.

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Wed Nov 05, 2014 9:49 pm Post Number: #4 Post
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Yes, Mark is very knowledgable and enthusiastic! At one point he says something equivalent to "You may have noticed I talk pretty fast - it's because I'm always thinking and my brain moves this fast!" I have now gone through most of the video 2-3x and there is a lot of detail and well articulated theory. I appreciate the fact that it's a system that fits together and all the pieces relate to and build on one another.

Although he says he isn't going to talk about releases - he actually spends 5-10 minutes with Chris Barnes talking about a specific problem with Chris' release that is caused by being overeager, leaning forward and getting off balance at the finish, which manifests itself as a poor release (ie. topping the ball). So, although it technically isn't about "releases", it's a fix for what might feel like a (common) release problem.

BTW, over the past few months I've taken (no joke) every book out of my library system related to bowling. Most of them are pretty basic, although a few are definitely winners that I have purchased. Besides the Baker book, some favorites are "Bowling Execution" by John Jowdy and "Focused For Bowling" by Dean Hinitz. I also liked Earl Anthony's "Winning Bowling", which was a little dated but still had many good tips and is well written.

Steve

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Thu Nov 06, 2014 8:32 am Post Number: #5 Post
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stevespo wrote:
I received the video over the weekend and was able to watch it. I'm definitely going to go back and view it again, but my initial impressions -

It's very helpful to have these types of concrete benchmarks to think about and strive for. They're fundamentally about accuracy and consistency, while improving speed and power. There are obviously other ways to get there, but these all make sense to me. The relationships between the ball and head/shoulder in the swing plane, the relationship between your head and feet at the key transitions (push away, pivot step, release). It's about being smooth, efficient and balanced throughout the approach and through the release. Avoiding small inconsistencies that rob energy and also cascade into other problems. Being able to identify, and then work towards hitting these benchmark positions seems like a good way to grow.

I have been using the Baker book for a while and the video builds on that while providing some concrete details for evaluating where you are now, and how to move forward. The book has helped me to be more balanced - to hit my timing spot and post my shots. I believe that has helped with carry and scoring. The 10 point system provides other key elements that I think will be helpful. It also includes a section on how to take video so that you can analyze your technique.

For me averaging 205+ and working hard to improve, I feel like I will get a lot of value out of it. I think it can most benefit intermediate bowlers, and perhaps people starting out who are really committed to the sport. Probably even more elite bowlers who might need some refinement or a sanity check on their timing and approach.

This is not a general purpose bowling video. No talk at all about shooting spares, lane transitions, oil patterns, equipment, league/tournament strategy, etc. Mark talks pretty fast, and at times I wish there was a bit more detail, but the content is good. I'd have liked to see more exchanges with the bowlers, like the one with Chris Barnes at the end - which I found very helpful. The production quality and overall presentation are very good. Some of the transitions are a bit too elaborate for me, but it's a well made piece of work.

There is a brief mention about release at the end, but it's essentially "I don't talk about release, because if you do these 10 things really well, the release will be there". I agree, but it's obviously not that simple. Releases and managing hand position (tilt and rotation) are key things to high level bowlers, but they're not going to be as useful if your fundamentals are not there. Once you can hit target with accuracy and power, then it's time to work on other aspects. I suspect we'll see additional books and videos, which is great - because I think these fill a need and provide a different way of looking at things.

Steve


Thanks Steve. This is a very useful insight as I am planning to get a copy of my own.

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Sat Nov 08, 2014 7:31 pm Post Number: #6 Post
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Thanks for your comments and insights folks. Your willingness to share your thoughts on a topic that goes beyond your own personal success or travails, is commendable. You reflect the positive side of sports. :)

For anyone that has interest in such things, I highly recommend the Mark's book, 'The Game Changer".
There is an e-reader version of Mark's book.

One way to see more from Mark is to support the products he offers.
Bowling books and videos are poor sellers. I believe this reflects poorly on the sport and it's participants.
There are a few interviews with Mark on Youtube, e.g. from Bowling Expo, there are also the short videos that were found at one time on the Ebonite site.
The erstwhile Ebonite set illustrates Mark's fast paced style of verbal communication. His facial expressions, tone of voice, mile a minute speech pattern reflect his enthusiasm and passion for teaching and growing the sport.
It's almost like he's on departing train speaking to people on the platform ...

I'll also throw in a plug for the Brian Voss book, "Bare Bones Bowling" another fine instructional book.

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Sun Nov 09, 2014 8:42 am Post Number: #7 Post
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Excellent. Maybe a better teaching tool for coaches, as a little to much for some students.

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Mon Nov 10, 2014 3:56 pm Post Number: #8 Post
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This DVD recently became available via AMAZON.
DVD + Standard Shipping runs just under 36.00 USA Dollars.

P.S.

If you have an AMAZON account and have viewed the DVD or read any of the books they sell, please consider posting your review there. It couldn't hurt and might just help.

You might also consider throwing in a plug for this forum and citing forum reviews of bowling media.

Help the Bowling Garden Grow, from little seeds do Mighty Oaks grow ...



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Comparison is the thief of joy.

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"An ever vigilant press is the guardian of a free society."
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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Mon Nov 10, 2014 4:56 pm Post Number: #9 Post
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I'm not much of an Amazon reviewer, but I stuck my review up and included a link to the forum. Every little bit helps.

Steve

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Tue Nov 11, 2014 3:26 am Post Number: #10 Post
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WOW! From an aesthetic perspective this video is simply a world class first rate production. The cinematography of this video along with the music is simply awesome. Well done Jason "Bowling Guy" Thomas. I mean, after the first few minutes, I thought I was getting ready to see a featured feature at a movie theater. Mark Baker has done a sterling job in presenting his "system" for bowling improvement. While his system is not simple, Mark presents it in systematic way in which any bowler, who is serious about developing an advance game, can use the material build a rock solid physical game. The topical use of cameras and filming to enhance that development is explored with detail. The use of 4 models (Chris Barnes, Lynda Barnes, Tommy Jones and Barry Asher) illustrating four different styles is a very productive way to present his case to a wide range of bowlers. His system is based on the "10 Hall of Fame Positions" that he believes is the foundation to winning bowling. In this section we learn his definition of timing and what to look for in understanding the traditional perspectives of "early timing", "perfect timing" and "late timing". One of the minor flaws in the presentation of the material is a tendency to be reductionist in presenting some of the material and this can be illustrated in his discussion of timing. The history of "timing" is a lot richer and deeper than he alludes to. Also, in an opposing position, I can show why a lot of bowlers overturn the ball directly resulting from the physiology of the forearm and hand-a "fact" that he seems to deny. The section on the flawed release is far from being complete. Of course this DVD is not a history of the understanding of the physical game but the undereducated bowler should be aware there is a great more historical and contemporary content than what is alluded too. I also have a minor philosophical issue with the use of the article THE as in "The System". Systems that imply closure always fail given that a "black swan" always appears which, in the end, collapses the system. Instead of THE SYSTEM, I would have preferred THE BAKER PERSPECTIVE: A Systematic Way to Understand and Improve Your Bowling. These are minor criticisms that should not take away from this important work by "this generation's bowling coach". Bakes- well done my friend, well done.

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Tue Nov 11, 2014 5:54 pm Post Number: #11 Post
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You folks have me chomping at the bit. :)
My copy shipped today or yesterday ...

When I've viewed the video I would like to add my review on Amazon, furthermore, I would like to quote with your permission space permitting some of the words of reviewers.

Again, thanks to all.

Gary, thanks for the verbal landscape you painted.

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 4:58 am Post Number: #12 Post
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As one who prefers visual learning the video is right up my alley (pun intended)! We all know that Mark gets a bit excited and talks a bit fast at times but I had no problem with it. One suggestion would be a way to somehow import or export videos taken to compare. It would help rather that trying to hold your phone to the computer.
Overall it is a great tool for coaches and bowlers. As I said earlier for visual learners it is great. Just took too long to get it out!


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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Thu Nov 13, 2014 8:54 pm Post Number: #13 Post
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O.K. Mark, I'm waiting for the box set :)

I had noted a comment (perhaps a bit pejorative in nature) in a review of his book on amazon regarding Mark's mention of pros he's coached so I thought I'd add my take on it.
As in his book, Mark cites some of the elite he has coached. This is not name dropping or chest thumping, it is sort of a resume for the uninitiated. No more than a Physician's diplomas and certificates up on a wall.

I second every superlative written above by all who have reviewed thus far.

This is a TOP NOTCH instructional DVD, hopefully not the last from Mark and company.

I received this yesterday and played it last evening. I want to view it again tonight when Morpheus "god of dreams" is not knocking on my eyelids.

Mark spoke of the 100% effort insofar as expenditure of effort.
I think the DVD reflects 100% quality effort and passion for instruction.

I always look for cause and effect instruction. At every salient point there is a description of the rationale behind the instruction. Do thus and such. Why? Because thus and such.
To me, this is the way to teach!
This type of instruction fosters understanding. I think this is a trait he adopted via his experience teaching engineers (see "Game Changer") :)

I'm very happy with this product and I hope there will be more.

In watching and listening to Marks words, I recalled writings of Tom Kouros and other coaching greats.
Not that Mark purloined or misrepresented anything here, just certifying the solidity of his philosophies and teachings and some echoes from other masters. His "Timing Spot" is as far as I know unique to Marks creative brain.

Additionally, I like Marks communication skills and enthusiasm.

He is the teacher many of us wish we all had in school, a difference maker!
Kudos.

This is no buffet, this is a full meal well worth every penny.

In an imaginary meeting between Mark and myself, a scene from the original
"The day the earth stood still" in a scene with Michael Rennie and Sam Jaffe comes to mind.




Klaatu: You have faith, Professor Barnhardt?

Attachment:
Klaatu.JPG



Barnhardt: It isn't faith that makes good science, Mr. Klaatu, it's curiosity. Sit down, please. There are several thousand questions I'd like to ask you.

Attachment:
Sam Jaffe.JPG



p.s. Gary, I have a few thousand for U2 :)


As always, I encourage folks to seek out multiple sources, masters past and present.
There is much to be learned.

p.p.s.
Don't keep this forum a secret.


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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 6:52 pm Post Number: #14 Post
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Comparison is the thief of joy.

http://mwkworks.com/desiderata.html

"An ever vigilant press is the guardian of a free society."
E-books are convenient, but easily changed or removed
"Belief without thought endangers freedom."
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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 10:25 pm Post Number: #15 Post
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I have both the book and the dvd and they are excellent. I was also fortunate to have two one on one lessons with Mark in both 2015 and 2016. For a little background I turned 77 this april and I usually bowl ABT tournaments, which are once a week on Sundays using sport shots and are handicapped. In my first lesson I asked Mark if he could teach me the new releases. His reply was I need to first see how you bowl and how I can work with what you all ready do. He doesn't believe in starting from scratch especially with an old timer like me. He helped my timing so that I am now able to post most of my shots. Since Mark worked with me I have 2 wins in both 2015 and 2016 and one so far in 2017. The best investment at my age was getting his materials and working with him and I rewatch the DVD every so often when I realize my timing is off. Maybe this fall I'll join a sport league if I can find one. i used to bowl in a sport league at Cambrian bowl in San Jose CA a number years ago but the center has closed. House shots don't appeal to me and in my opinion (remember its just my opinion) have degraded the sport of bowling. Recreational bowling is alive and well.

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 6:44 pm Post Number: #16 Post
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Note, these comments are from bowlers who all have different timing.
Yes, they are on the DVD. Mark's DVD is worth the price.





Eye opener ??
After familiarizing yourself with the 10 keys Mark uses on the DVD, go watch some bowling at your local house.

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 7:26 pm Post Number: #17 Post
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I've been eyeballing the mark baker DvD for quite a while now. Unfortunately the dvd is not available in my country, importing it is gonna cost me around 80 usd with all the fees which had me hesitating.
But I've just pulled the trigger, can't wait for it to arrive. Thanks for the recommendation guys.

The DvD is propably geared towards people with a higher skill level than me, but I'm always on the lookout for new material as I'm pretty much through any video material the internet has to offer and I'm still thirsting for more. Might do a little review from a beginner's perspective.

cheers everyone.


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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 2:06 am Post Number: #18 Post
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kajmk wrote:
Mark's DVD is worth the price.


Let me repeat that: "Mark's DVD is worth the price".

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 Post subject: Re: Rate/Review - The System - DVD - Mark Baker
 Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2018 11:33 am Post Number: #19 Post
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After watching the DvD a few times I'd like to give my review.

First of all:
The DvD is well worth the price. It's just so different to all the other teaching videos I've seen.


Who is this dvd aimed at?


I'd say it's geared towards coaches and/or serious bowlers who like to improve.
It's emphasis is on video analyzing. If you're looking for a "how to bowling" guide, this is probably NOT the dvd for you. I'd say you should have at least some theorectical knowledge on bowling technique to really benefit from the material. Dean Champ's videos as well as Mohammed Janahi's videos on youtube complement this DVD very well.

Video and Audio quality:

The video material is of excellent quality. Shots are shown throughout various angles.
Mark Baker talks fast as someone already mentioned in here, but even as a non native speaker I had no trouble following him at all.

Hall of Fame positions:

The hall of fame positions are a great concept. Don't think of it as a step by step guide on how to bowl, but rather a set of guidelines or cornerstones which in sum make for a great bowling shot.
Throughout the many shots of the pros the different hall of fame positions are shown over and over. Each hall of fame position and how they interact with eachother are highlighted in every shot.
It's a fresh take on teaching bowling.

Cause and Effect:

I especially love the focus on "what happens if you DON'T do the things as instructed".
That really helped me out. It's easy to identify the effect of a problem when analyzing my own video, but it's really hard to identify the cause in the chain of a full approach of said problem as an amateur bowler like me.
The emphasis on the cause and effects of bad technique in this dvd makes it more than well worth it for me.


The only negative aspect of the dvd is imho that there's a lot of "fluff" to stretch out the length.
The first 25 minutes are basically just intro, introduction of the bowlers, introduction of the 10 hall of fame positions and baker timing spot (which are coverd throughout the dvd in much more detail) and the video taping instructions are here on the wiki as well. Which cuts the effective length to just about 45 minutes for me. But believe me, those 45 minutes are so worth it. Will continue to watch it on a regular basis.




4.8 / 5 for me

Cheers guys!


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