July 12, 2024

A Practical Guide to Filming Sports with Drones

Getting the best images and clips from a sports event is a challenge. The right angles, the right moments, and whatnot.

However, the drone technology used in photography has made it significantly easier and more convenient.

Incorporated by major sports organizations in the sports domain, it is time for professional videographers to befriend drones.

Providing new vantage points and highlights of the events, your sports films will only resonate with perfection.

If you are a beginner without knowledge of using drones, here is a guide to help you know everything about using drones in sports filming!

Why is Filming with Drones So Popular?

Why is Filming with Drones So Popular

Filming with drones has provided a lot of benefits to professional videographers. With this dynamic filming, the costs are significantly reduced.

When drones were not easily available, aerial filming was done using helicopters, which are way more expensive than drones.

Additionally, it is not just cost but expecting the helicopters to fit in small and confined places, another reason drones conveniently helped the filming domain.

And it never is boring with a few shots from the dynamics of aerial filming integrated with ground filming.

All the angles covered using drones give your sports films an interesting touch by rendering unique perspectives with aerial views.

On the other hand, drones, powered by batteries instead of fuel, make them an environment-friendly alternative.

Even after the advent of drones in the photography sphere, cameras still hold popularity.

If you want to explore the best camera for filming sports, we have covered a detailed guide on it; follow the link to learn.

Drone Technology in Sports Filming

Drone Technology in Sports Filming

The arrival of drone technology has completely revolutionized filming sports.

Drones, which can be accommodated even in indoor spaces, make it easier to record sports events without hassle.

Filming sports has become so much easier with drones, whether in an indoor game like a badminton match or an outdoor football match.

Investing in high-quality drones will be expensive, but it is worth spending your money on drones in the long run.

Some reputed sports organizations like the NBA, MLB, and NFL have already adopted coverage of the events using airborne drones.

The first organization to use drones was the NBA. While drones are very efficient in filming sports, they are also utilized in performance analytics, improved officiating, and sportscasting.

Filming with Drones: Here’s What You Must KnowFilming with Drones

The use of drones has improved the performance of filming sports so much. But here are a few things you must know before choosing a drone for your workflow.

As we mentioned earlier, costs can be a bit higher for a drone program.

With the purchase of the drone itself, buying the necessary hardware and the training required makes it tedious.

So before you purchase a drone, ensure you have set right your goals with its usage in your workflow.

Another important thing to consider when introducing drones to your sports filming is to acquaint yourself with the NAA guidelines and rules associated with using drones.

For example, you can fly drones legally during the daytime, or your drone must not go higher than 400 feet or cross the speed of 100 miles/hour.

Ensure you know the lawsuits associated with negligence in drone operations.

There is a possibility of a lawsuit in case of drone crashes. This necessitates training sessions for flying the drones safely.

With that, your drone must be in your sight throughout. Airports and aircraft nearby also limit the use of drones for filming sports.

Filming with drones must be done in a way that does not violate anybody’s privacy.

Tips to Follow When Filming with Drones

Tips to Follow When Filming with Drones

  • The drone you work with must be closely analyzed with all the functions and settings. Your design must align with the filming requirements of your work as a videographer.
  • Another concern with using drones is that there might be a bit of paperwork and permits needed to use drones. Conduct thorough research on all the legal aspects of using drones is advised.
  • If you are new to using a drone in your workflow, learn how it works by training before using it in real-time events.
  • With different types of drones, there will be a variation in the battery life of the drone you are using. Pack a few extra batteries when you begin to film with drones to ensure your workflow gets no disturbance.

What are the Disadvantages of Filming with Drones?

What are the Disadvantages of Filming with Drones?

Weather conditions like heavy rain and strong winds make the drones lose their stability.

Hence, it is now wise to use them in extreme weather conditions.

There are increased risks of colliding, malfunctioning, or crashing the drones with other objects.

Another concern is the battery life of drones, which is insufficient to last longer sports events, making it inconvenient to work with drones.


Drones have been used in different industries, including filming sports.

With equipped high-resolution cameras, drones help give a new angle and vision to sports videography.

Reduced costs, aerial filming, and the convenience of recording in confined spaces are a few advantages of using drones in sports videography.

By using drones as a replacement for helicopters, we are significantly reducing the waste impacting the environment.

Drones, however useful for filming, require rigorous training to avoid any mishappenings with their use.

Be careful to understand the legal aspects of using drones and the lawsuits in cases of drone crashes and collisions.

Drones have aided the game of filming sports with their innovative technology. Comment down if you have any more queries!

Benjamin Moore

Benjamin Moore, a graduate of UCLA Film School, has been an integral part of our team since 2019, infusing his cinematic expertise into the world of action cameras. With a career spanning over 15 years in film and media production, his insights have been pivotal in enhancing the functionality and quality of action camera technology. Benjamin, a passionate marathon runner, often combines his love for endurance sports with his passion for capturing life's dynamic moments through action cameras.

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