7 Tips to get better at Sports Photography

7 Tips to get better at Sports Photography

Many of us may assume that sports photography is equivalent to  other regular photography but that is not the case. Sports photography is quite different. In sports photography, also known as action photography, one cannot simply  take photos in continuous frames and depend on luck to obtain  one good  frame out of the many. Photography is not luck, it requires thought and some dedication.
7 tips for sports photograohy

And today in this post I will share my knowledge from past experiences. I will present 7 tips to get you better at sports photography . I hope this will be helpful for individuals who are interested in sports photography and or action photography.

1. Composition

Composition is one of the other aspects  to consider while shooting.  It is suggested not to get everything in frame and solely focus of one subject composing a tight frame. In some games you will have to go with wider  composition but in majority  of the games the frame is  always composed tight. Also  keep in mind is
using a 400 mm tele lens to shoot photos  will not give a wider shot. but you can always get creative with composition to add depth into photography.

paras khadka captain of nepal

2. Focus

Focusing can get extremely tricky in sports photography because in sports photography the photographer is  dealing with subject in continuous motion.Most photographers prefer single point focus and spot metering. This helps you to keep the focus in a active focus point when using auto focus. Continuous focus is also preferred by many users, Nikon users can recognize it as AFS-C and in Canon users identify it as  AI- Servo.  It is advantageous if your body has AF-ON button because you will not need to keep on pressing the shutter button half and later to shoot.With and AF-ON you can decouple the shutter release and focus operation. This button is absolutely dedicated to focusing purposes only and your shutter release button shoots the images.

focus sports photography

3. Timing

Timing should be very precise and perfect in sports photography because of the fact that the subject keeps moving and different actions occur simultaneously.  Sometimes the photographer’s instincts work in terms of capturing a motion but not always, therefore timing is a crucial factor in obtaining great motion shots. So be extra conscious about the thins happening around. So be alert about when ever you are shooting some sports.


4. WhiteBalance

Most of the time Auto White Bbalance works but in some indoor games one has to adjust the WB to match or obtain exact colours. Knowledge of Kelvin is helpful in capturing the best sports images. How ever if you are shooting in Raw that should not be a bigger problem.

5. ISO

Most of you should be familiar with ISO and its use. In international stadiums and games the lighting condition are so perfect that you will not need to use higher ISO. However,  the local stadiums  may  not be as developed, therefore light needs to be taken into consideration. If you are shooting indoors or night match then the light condition may be  bad or even worse some time(my personal experience). But setting high ISO  solves the problem of lighting but the photographer will have to compromise with the sharpness and noise of the image.


6. Off the field

Different things happens in the field as well as off the field. You may see crazy fans and their activities. This may also help you to get some good photos.So be extra conceus about the thins happening around.

ANFA Vice President Narendra Shresth

7. Equipment

Every DSLR that is out out in the market is not made compatible for sports photography. Does not mean to say you cant shoot sports with normal DSLR , it just that few DSLR are made better compatible with this genre of photography. You will need a camera body that can shoot high frame rates, for instance Canon 7D, and Nikon D300s, these are semi- professional bodies. The more advanced and professional bodies are Nikon and D4, Canon EOS 1DX, these bodies can shoot up to 14 frame per second. But dont get discouraged and believe me the body you hold in your hand can take any picture you can think of , though you may need to work little harder paradox isn’t it?

Another important equipment are the  lenses , there are variety of lenses in  market. You will require a  good telephoto zoom lens with wide apertures such as, 70-200mm f 2.8 to  obtain a  good shallow depth of field. Additionally it is also convenient  in low light setting. If expense is not a problem than it is recommended that you  buy  telephoto lens such as 400mm f 2.8, for enriched quality.

NIKKOR 400mm f2.8G

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About author

Anup Ghimire
Anup Ghimire 60 posts

Anup ghimire is a self learned Photographer/Designer and recently graduated in multimedia technologies from London metropolitan university.Traveling is something he loves the most after photography. You can see some of his photos at his facebook photography page https://www.facebook.com/intomyviewfinder

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