Gimbals have revolutionized filming, even on a budget. It enables stabilized motion capture without the extensive filming gear so often required to get the best shot. We look at six ways to use a camera stabilizer for sports footage plus tips to step up your filming game.
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Filming sports can be challenging, but it also gives you a unique opportunity to be creative. From following the action with close-up shots to outdoor or extreme sports, filmmakers can create an immersive experience for their audience.
Video stabilisers offer tons of versatility, so why not make the most of it? And with a lightweight gimbal such as StayblCam, you have even more freedom to move around and try different techniques.
You can raise it above your head for an overhead view or sweep in low for dramatic effects.
A gimbal stabilizer can also mimic a dolly. You can capture the classic push-in or pull-out shots by moving the gimbal steadily forward or backward.
Additionally, you can hold a camera gimbal vertically or inclined, push in at a low angle, tilt up or down, and pan. The options are almost endless. As long as the camera is facing your subject, you can get some excellent sports footage.
Keeping your camera in focus and steady throughout a game is crucial to get the best sports footage. However, it's not always possible to use a tripod and stay in one place when it comes to sports. You still want to be mobile. That's where a gimbal stabilizer comes in handy.
A phone or gopro gimbal enables you to use your body as a tripod. While standing in one place, follow your subject with the camera by rotating your body and gimbal in the same direction as your subject is moving.
You can use this shot for most sports that require the camera to stay focused on a moving subject over a shorter distance, such as a baseball player running between bases or swimmers.
The parallax shot is a 180 or 360 orbiting motion with the subject in the middle of the frame. With a gimbal, you'll get smooth footage that shows the action from all angles.
You can use this shot for many sports, but it's best for slower, indoor sports like snooker, darts, or chess. While your subject can be stationary or mobile, it works best if you're a short distance from what you're shooting.
One of the biggest perks of a video stabilizer is its size and weight, making it possible to hand over the camera to another operator mid-shot. It allows continuous, unbroken shots where it might be impossible otherwise.
Parkour is one of the sports where this shot works the best. Operators can stand on different levels and hand the video stabilizer to one another while the subject jumps, leaps, and rolls over obstacles.
A moving car or motorbike makes it possible to capture fast-paced long-distance sports, for example, cycling or marathons. A phone allows you to do the same without using a car mount.
You can hold your video stabilizer in your hands and point it out the passenger window. Or, stick it out the window while you film.
Depending on your gimbal and the type of sport, you can film as you walk, run or bike alongside your subject too.
Take your sports footage to the next level by following your subject with a wide shot without stopping recording, from start to finish. It does require a reasonable level of fitness and, in some instances, skill. But you'll capture unbelievable angles that make it worth the effort.
You see this type of sports footage with extreme sports or winter sports, and the filmmaker usually records while participating in the sport themselves, for instance, skiing, skydiving, or skateboarding.
For a start-to-finish action scene, you can use a gimbal to stabilize your shot as you trail your subject. Make sure you choose the best camera stabilizer for the job. It should be tough enough to withstand a few bumps along the way. StayblCam is durable and can handle rough terrain. It's also waterproof. In other words, it can go where you can.
If you're not ready for extreme sports filming, capture a half-court basketball game with a wide shot while running.
Filming sports require excellent timing and instincts, and it may take a while to get the hang of it. Here are a few simple things you can do to give your sports footage the edge.
Truly spectacular sports filming takes practice. A gopro gimbal or a phone stabilizer is an affordable and versatile addition to your filming arsenal. It can help take your filming game to the next level. Lastly, technology is always changing. And so are the rules of filmmaking. Instead of playing it safe, have fun, explore, experiment, and create your own rules!
How do you use a gimbal for filming sports? Share your tips and tricks in the comment section!