#74 How to shoot kids sports – 10 tips


Are you like me? Do you take photos of your kids as they play football, handball, floorball or what ever sport they do? I have done that for more than ten years now. During this time I often asked my self how I could do something new and/or more creative – and also what to do with the pictures. Here are ten of my idéas…

(It may be different rules and laws in different countries as for taking photos of children. I advice you to seek the knowledge in your specific country, before you start to shoot and share.)

1. Don’t  give up.
Shoot alot and don’t give it up. I shot my sons fotball team for ten years in a row – from he was 5 years to he was 15. A lot of things happen in ten years. I had a couple of thousand pictures on my hard drive, that I shot during the years. About 250 of them ended up in a photo book, that I offered the other players/parents to buy (I made no profit…). Very nice and I think my son and his friends will smile many times in the future, as they open the book.

2. Take photos of all the players.
Don’t just shoot your own kids. Try and shoot the whole team (it is probably a good idea to ask the other parents if it is ok…). Most people today only shoot with their mobile phone. As we know, this is not the best as it comes to taking good photos of sports. The players are tiny tiny in the pictures and if you zoom in, they get grainy grainy…

3. Change lenses
A tele photo lens is often a natural lens to use as you shoot sports. But it can be nice to take some wider shots now and then. If you are going to tell a story in a photo book, you need to have some different perspectives. Only tele photo shots can be boring. Try and take some shots of the surroundings or of the arena.

4. Move around and get close
Don’t just sit among the audience all the time. You have to move around to get a nice variation of pictures. If you shoot all pictures from the same spot it only result in the same picture in different variations. Get close to the players and find good angels – without getting in the way or disturb.

5. Change shutterspeed and aperture
Often sport photos is associated with fast shutterspeeds, to freeze movments. That is often the best way to go. But why not try and get some shots with slower shutterspeeds? As long as you are not payed to get all the goals in sharp shots, you can make some experiments. It can be fun to get a cool speed effect in the picture. Be aware that 95% of the shots get blurry, but that othter 5 % can be really cool.

6. Take photos of the audience
As a nice opportunity to score a goal builds up, turn to the audience. A picture of the cheering audience can make a very good complement to all the pictures of the players. The audience is also often the parents of the players, which can be a nice thing to add to a photo book about a team.

7. Take photos of the team leaders
Don’t forget the leaders of the team. They put in hundreds of hours in your kids – in most cases probably for free. Watch them interact with the players and see their reactions as they score a goal.
There can also be more than one coach of a team during the years. It can be fun to see them all in a photo book that stretch over many years.

8. Share the pictures
Use social media to share the pictures with the players and their parents. Use a privat group, to keep it more to whom it may concern.

9. Make a project
Try and make a project of your photos. Make it from the start or make it after some years, as you have collected some photos. I made a photobook of my sons fotball team between the years 2009 and 2019, as I wrote above in this post. I didn’t plan this from the beginning, but suddenly it seemed to be a good idéa – and the result was great.

10. Don’t save all pictures
If you shoot sports you most likley will shoot alot of pictures. Don’t be afraid of that. The more you shoot – the more good shots you will get in the end. But be prepared. Most pictures will be rubbish. Import all pictures into Lightroom (or what ever program you use…) and then make a hard selection. Throw the rest away. It will make it easier to choose what to share or what to put in a book.

Finally some last advice
Don’t try and make money on selling the pictures to the other parents. That is at least my advice. See it as your contribution to the team. The coach – for example – is most likley not paied for what he or she does. Be generous and share for free. Of course – if you make a book, everyone must pay what it cost. Thats it. Good Luck…and as I said; this is only what I think. What are your thoughts? Please share 🙂


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