Sports photography is probably one of the many thrilling genres of photography to be interested in. It can be filled with so much high intensity and not to mention some jaw-dropping action here and there to get your going or grab your interest. Sports photography can be particularly interesting if you have a thing for the sport you’re capturing but don’t get too distracted. We’ve spoken many times about sports photography and even photographing extreme sports. However, in this article, we will be talking a little about doing indoor sports photography. Sporting events won’t also be outside which means you won’t always have the help of natural light on your side to help you out. I will be sharing some useful tips that will come in handy when doing indoor sports photography to help you get some amazing shots. Let’s begin!
The first tip I have for you as a photography beginner in indoor sports photography is to have an idea what the game is about. Knowing the objective and rules of the game can help you so much in capturing great photographs. Having a quick overview of the game itself as well as some of the players or team history will help you get some more interesting shots during the game. Many times as sports photographers we end up not paying much attention to those key details that could be an asset to us. In addition to having an idea of the rules and some of the players in the game, It is also important to know some facts about the game overall for your own safety reasons.
Sports photography can sometimes require us to be very close to the action, for example, basketball. I’ve watched many basketball games and see players accidentally tumble over on to photographers or even just the people there to watch the game. Many of these people or photographers already knew the consequences of sitting so close to the action and as a result, know what to expect in the event anything happens. This will aid you to be careful, not only for yourself but also for your equipment as well. With that said, do your research before you head to the sporting event you’ll be covering.
It is important to get there earlier than the fans who will even be watching the game when doing Indoor sports photography or photography overall. There are a few reasons why I would recommend doing this. One of those few reasons is that you get an early jump on the players warming up or doing the practice. This doesn’t only give you a chance to get some shots of them practicing but also gives you the chance to practice your shots as well and test the lighting around you.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve shown up to a sporting event on time for the actual event to start and ended up missing or messing up some great shots because I didn’t get a chance to warm up myself and get prepared for the game or event ahead. Another reason why it is good to show up early is to get a good spot to shoot as well. You never really know how many photographers are going to be at this sporting event and it can be hassling to have to forcefully find a spot in a pool of photographers trying to get great shots like you. Getting there early will help you to secure a good spot and test out your best positions to shoot from so you get a great perspective and some variety in your images as well.
Having the right gear during indoor sports photography is very important before you even leave home. Without the right equipment, it is easy to find yourself in a tough position not getting the shot you need for yourself or even your clients. In many cases, you will find where some gyms may look very well lit but don’t let this fool you as it’s a completely different ball game when it comes to being well lit for photography itself. Some of the things I pack in my camera bag for indoor sports photography are firstly my Speedlight flash that will come in handy If I have inadequate light where I am. I make sure to have at least 3 memory cards on my person because you never know how many shots you might be taking based on the intensity and importance of the game itself as some sporting event can be very popular which means you want to capture all the content you can without running out of space.
Having extra memory cards on your person, in general, is important as a sports photographer for this very reason. My next piece of equipment is the lenses I carry. I usually travel with just two lenses that have served me pretty well when it comes to sporting events, especially indoor ones.
The lenses of choice for me are the 24-70mm f/2.8 which is great for variety and some close shots here and there along with its aperture which is good for some situations in low light. I also have the 70-200mm as well to helps me get super close for some intense shots of players or even coaches during the game. With these lenses, I tend to capture a great variety and diversity in my shots that have proven to tell a great story each time. Depending on the sport, you might want to carry a tripod but do some research first as you don’t want to be traveling too heavy heading to a sporting event.
As always, it’s been fun sharing these very simple but useful tips with you for indoor sports photography. Until next time, take care.
If you don’t know if sports photography is for you, as a beginner in photography, you can always explore some of Sleeklens Photography Courses.