Most runners want to document their adventures, and GoPro is the perfect tool. Here’s your comprehensive guide on GoPro running. Read on to find the best GoPro for runners and tips and mounts to make the best videos.
We also include a suggested shot list and camera settings for your next run.
The Best GoPro for Runners
The best GoPro for running is the latest Hero11 Black. This is because of its incredible Hypersmooth 5.0. This feature gives buttery smooth footage even while running. Plus, you can capture up to 5.3K video and control your camera with voice controls.
But if you already own a Hero10 Black or even the Hero9 Black, you won’t be disappointed. They both have decent image stabilization. And shoot exceptional footage.
Using a GoPro to film your run doesn’t require tech skills, especially if you invest in the new Hero11 It’s waterproof even without a case and has a supplemental extended-run battery.
More on how to use a GoPro on your runs below.
Why Run With a GoPro?
With the latest GoPro, you don’t need to travel with a large camera for photos and also a video camera. Plus, you don’t need an external gimbal.
The Hero11 shoots 27MP still images, up to 5.3K video, is waterproof without a case, and has a built-in stabilizer, so you don’t even need a gimbal.
Here’s how you might look if you don’t run with a GoPro. 😀
4 Best GoPro Running Accessories
GoPro offers some accessories that make it easier to create a stellar running video, such as:
- A head strap shows your run as you see it, so it’s a cool way to film video and a great way to use a GoPro for running. Of course, the camera has weight and you’ll notice that on your forehead.
- The chest mount is one of the most popular options because you can wear the camera on your front or your back. The footage is very clear since the camera is securely strapped to your torso.
- The hand strap lets you keep the camera on your wrist to capture more of the action. Consider how shaky the footage might be, though, unless you keep your arms fairly still while you’re running.
- A selfie stick is even less secure than a hand strap because you’re holding the GoPro out in front of you.
While you can use a selfie stick while running, you might find it’s better once you’ve reached your destination and want to take stunning footage of the location.
Before we get to the specific tips, here’s a taste of the type of footage you can capture with a GoPro on your next run.
GoPro Footage: Running the Ridges in Norway
This video shows Kilian Jornet running the ridges in the mountains of Åndalsnes, Norway.
Tips For Getting The Best Shots While Running
Don’t overthink it—running footage shows you enjoying the path; it doesn’t have to become a blockbuster film. Just go out and have fun.
But do consider these 14 tips first.
1. Use Voice Commands
When you’re running, there’s no time to stop, take off your GoPro, and fuss with the settings to make sure you’re capturing everything.
Make sure to turn on voice commands so you can be more efficient while filming your run.
There are 17 basic GoPro voice commands you can use.
These voice commands include:
- Start Recording and Stop Recording
- Take a Photo
- Video Mode
- Turn Off
- Shoot Burst
Using voice commands also ensures you won’t fumble the camera while it’s recording, resulting in more stable footage.
2. Use Built-in Stabilization: Activate Hypersmooth
GoPro cameras have a feature called Hypersmooth. It produces super smooth footage without changing the field of view.
It’s not applicable in all resolutions or cold weather, but when you activate it, it detects motion from frame to frame and smooths it out. For applicable resolutions, check your specific model.
3. Have a Plan: The Shot List
Have a clear idea of your route and what you want to capture. Think about the shots other GoPro runners have taken that inspire you and figure out how to recreate them.
It’s a good idea to create a shortlist of shots – either mental or written.
You might consider:
- Tying shoes
- Leaving the front door or exiting your car
- Landscape shots,
- Panning left to right while running
- Camera rotation: windmill from back to front
- Shooting forward: show what you see
- Shooting backward: show where you’ve been
- The small details: animals, insects, snacks on the trail
- The end of the trail: show the sunrise, the waves, the view
What shots do you like to get? Please add them in the comments below!
4. Get Early Shots
If you’re going on a run to capture some shots on your GoPro running, try to get out there early. You’ll have a chance to catch great light and not have as many people around.
It’ll also give you time to set up mounts and stabilize your camera without anyone bumping into you.
5. Shoot in Auto Mode
If you’re unfamiliar with your GoPro and are eager to get out on the trails, just use the camera in Auto Mode for amazing footage.
After you film a few runs on this setting, you can see if there’s anything you’d like to change, like slow motion, different lighting, or other settings.
6. Set the Focus
If you aren’t shooting in auto mode, turn on auto-focus and auto-exposure.
Your GoPro will look for the brightest area in the frame and adjust its exposure accordingly.
Here’s how to set the focus:
- Turn off your GoPro.
- Press and hold the Mode button until you see FOV/Auto. This turns on auto-focus.
- Swipe down to Protune.
- Swipe right to toggle Exposure to Auto.
If you want your camera to focus on a specific frame area, point it toward the object or person you want in focus. Press the Shutter button halfway down to lock your exposure settings onto that spot.
Here’s more about using GoPro Spot Meter and exposure control.
7. Turn On Protune
Protune is a special GoPro mode that unlocks higher-quality settings for photos & videos. For example, it lets you increase the bitrate of your videos up to 60 Mbps, which is the highest available on any GoPro.
Using this setting results in higher-quality footage with fewer compression artifacts. It’s convenient when shooting fast-moving subjects like runners. You can also adjust other settings like sharpness and color profile, among others.
Learn more about Protune.
8. Set the Right Exposure
You can adjust the exposure of your camera to enhance your footage. For example, a dark scene will look better with a brighter exposure, while a bright scene will look better with a darker exposure.
To adjust the exposure, go to Settings > Protune > Exposure Value > and select either + or – according to your needs.
Pro Tip: If you’re using an external microphone, ensure you’re using manual audio levels by going to Settings > Audio > Manual Audio Controls > On.
9. Use Burst Mode
Burst mode is great for capturing fast-moving objects like runners and cyclists. It can take up to 30 photos per second, depending on the model. This will allow you to pick out the best shot later on.
To enable burst mode, go to Settings > Photo Capture > Burst Rate and select how many photos per second you want it to take (10/30/60/etc.).
10. Try Modified Lenses
Trying another lens on your GoPro might make a difference. Lenses change how the footage looks whether you’re shooting from a stationary point or a moving vehicle.
To give your video a more professional look and feel, attach one of GoPro’s optional “Flat” or “Curved” lenses to your camera. You can swap them out quickly using the camera’s handy-dandy quick-release feature.
These lenses allow you to capture smooth, ultra-high-res video. You can enjoy an immersive experience without bumpy footage ruining it for you.
11. Use Wide or Superview Settings
When you set your GoPro to Wide or Superview, you’ll know you’re capturing more of your surroundings.
This is especially helpful when you use a chest mount because your shirt or shoulders won’t block the shot. Shooting wide also keeps the footage more stable.
12. Take Detail Shots
Though wide settings are ideal, you don’t want to forget the little things that make running videos great. For example, capturing detailed shots will make your footage look more epic than just having the same view of your run.
Here are some popular GoPro detail shots:
- Handheld shots while you’re running. A lot of cool stuff goes by while you’re on the trail.
- Get low to the ground and shoot up at people as they pass you.
- Don’t be afraid to get muddy or wet to get a great angle.
13. Make a Timelapse Video
You don’t have to show all the footage of your longer runs. Don’t risk letting your audience lose interest and cut away—condense it into a timelapse video.
Set the interval at one second with no limit to the duration. The camera stitches the images together without you having to do so in an external program.
How to Run and Film with a GoPro
Here are some great tips and angles for shooting your run with a GoPro by kofuzi.
Capture Great Running Shots With the GoPro Tips Above!
Every runner has a reason to run. Maybe it’s to stay in shape or train for a marathon. You may even be preparing for that triathlon you signed up for.
No matter the reason, GoPro running makes it easy to capture those moments with its wide range of mounts and accessories.
Harness everything the GoPro can provide by using the tips above to share your experience!
Like playing soccer? Here’s how to record a soccer game with a GoPro.
Planning on a hike? Here’s how to shoot epic GoPro hiking footage.
- About the Author
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Hey, I’m Dena! I’m a content creator and co-founder of Storyteller Tech.
Experienced GoPro Videographer: I’ve been shooting with GoPro cameras since 2012. Our first GoPro was the Hero3 Silver, bought for a Galapagos press trip. And today, we own 20+ action cameras, including GoPro, DJI, and Insta360 cameras.
Professional Creator: Bryan and I have developed video and content marketing plans for numerous international travel brands. And we also run several content businesses.
Photography Writer: I’ve written photography tutorials for well-known sites, including Digital Photography School.