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10 Best Lightroom Presets for Sports Photography

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Bulk editing in Adobe Lightroom is a great choice if you are an event photographer. Lightroom presets can be used in almost any field of photography. After selecting one or multiple images, it only takes a few clicks to edit them. This way, you can speed up your workflow.

Lightroom sports presets are a great way to edit your action photography quickly. They let sports photographers share their photos straight after a sports event.

In this article, we’ve collected some free and paid presets you can use. Read on to find the best Lightroom presets for sports photography and how to use them.

Low angle front view of a mixed race male American football player wearing a team uniform, training at a sports field, preparing to throw a football, with blue sky in the background

What are Presets?

Adobe Lightroom is an editing software program that lets you tweak your digital shots. You can raise and lower the exposure, play around with the colours and even change the perspective.

Presets are a way to change an image or a batch of images with one single click. If you download a preset, these adjustments were made by other Lightroom users and are available for you to use.

Some might only increase the sharpness of an image. The majority will act as a filter over your scenes, allowing you to edit them quickly and efficiently. These ‘filters’ adjust different things, from highlights and shadows to clarity, colour, and saturation.

Having your own preset can define your unique style. Luckily, Lightroom allows you to create your own.

Installing, Using, and Creating Presets

Installing Lightroom presets is easy and only requires a few steps. Plus, there are a few ways you can do this.

We have a step-by-step tutorial on how to install Adobe Lightroom Presets for you to check out. This tells you how to add them to Lightroom.

To use or create presets, we also have our How To Use Lightroom Develop Presets article.

Best Lightroom Sports Presets

Sports photography is a wide-ranging field. It encompasses team sports, such as football, and fast-moving vehicles like airplanes and cars. Presets that cover different types of sports might be difficult, as they concentrate on different elements.

Let’s look at what connects all the images you are likely to take. For example, most of them could do with a boost in contrast and clarity. This helps to separate the many parts of your scene.

As many sports make use of distinct colours, this can also be tweaked to make your images stronger.

Let’s have a look at the best sports photography presets out there.

A woman running on a racetrack, while listening to music

1. Workout Desktop Lightroom Presets – 123presets

The Workout Desktop Lightroom Presets even have a mobile version.

The package contains 11 Lightroom desktop presets. They make your photos appealing by creating a clear and airy atmosphere. They soften the skin of your subjects and separate them from the background. This makes it easier to focus on the people in your images. That’s why it’s great for capturing workouts, where the focus is on the people and not on their environment.

8 images of women and men doing sport.

2. Sports Photography Presets – Filtergrade

These Lightroom Presets by Ben Lumley (a sports photographer) are for Lightroom Classic and CC Desktop software and Lightroom Mobile.

This package contains Lightroom presets for black and white and colour images. They improve your images without making them look too artificial.

Turning a colour image into a black and white photograph is not an easy task. Colour images focus on how colours work together, whereas black and white focus on contrast and texture. These Lightroom presets can help you play around with both.

Image of people cycling. The left side of the photo is coloured, and the right is black and white.

3. 10 Sports Model Presets For Lightroom

Eldamar Studio’s Lightroom presets are great for many types of images. This package includes 10 presets.

This variety gives you the option to try more and decide which preset is the best for your image.

These presets are not only for action photography but also for photographing sports models.

Young woman is doing exercices with dumbbells in a dark room.

4. Vibrant Colors HDR Lightroom Preset – Preset Kingdom

The Vibrant Colours Lightroom preset from the Preset Kingdom is best used for water sports. It’s also perfect for any sport near water or under the blue sky. This is because it enhances the colour blue while reducing the highlights and reducing reflections.

By adding +100 to the shadows, they become darker, adding more contrast between them and the lighter areas. Whites and blacks are reduced to add detail and remove the chance of them being burned out.

The added vibrancy and saturation makes the colours pop, where the clarity separates the subject from the background.

A skater in colourful socks, on the beach, jumping high in the air.

5. Black & White Lightroom Presets – The Luxe Lens

These Lightroom presets are not specifically sports photography presets. Still, they can be great for sports photography.

Black and white photos can enhance motion as all the distracting colours have been removed. This helps images look more dramatic. It can also be easier to freeze motion without colours. You will also achieve a more timeless image.

Black and white image of a woman swimming in a pool.

6. Sport – Preset Love

There are a lot of adjustments in this Lightroom preset compared to the others in this list. This all increases the quality and ‘punchiness’ of the scene and subject.

First off, the temperature and tint changes add a touch of blue and green. Most sports, either indoor or outdoor, will benefit from the cinematic feel of this preset.

The contrast raises alongside the blacks, giving the subject more precedence. The whites are pushed up while the highlights fall, giving a little more light without overdoing it.

This preset is also free to download!A long jumper man in the air, captured from beneath.

7. Photonify Sport Preset

The Photonify Sport Preset can be used for different kinds of sport.

This free Lightroom preset doesn’t change the exposure value. It sharpens your images and strengthens the clarity, vibrance and saturation.

It nicely emphasises the orange parts, which looks especially nice on running tracks. It also separates people from the background, so it’s great for enhancing motion.

It makes your sports photos gritty and gives them a dramatic effect. We recommend it for advertising or a smaller photo collection. It does take away from natural colours, so it’s not the best option when documenting a sports event.

A runner tying his shoelaces.

8. Forest Dempsey Skate Lightroom Presets – FilterGrade

Custom-developed Lightroom presets from Forest Dempsy, who is an action photographer.

These are great for brightening your images and increasing their clarity. By lightening the background, they draw the viewers’ attention directly to your subject.

You can choose from the 10 different Lightroom presets you get. So you’ll probably find one that fits your image.A skater jumping high. Half of the image is dark, and the other half is made with a preset, which makes it bright.

9. Light and Bright – Exposure Empire

The Light and Bright free Lightroom preset adds light into your scene, as you can imagine given the name! The added blacks and shadows pull more detail from the darker areas by lowering the strength of the dark areas.

The lack of contrast helps to set the subject into the scene. By raising the saturation and lowering the vibrance, you keep the colour without being over the top.

action shot of a speeding car at night, split screen showing before and after editing with Lightroom sports presets

10. Grungy Sports – Nuugraphics

The Grungy Sports free Lightroom preset by Nuugraphics is short and sweet. There are only four adjustments, but they make all the difference to a wonderful sports shot.

Added contrast adds a punchiness to the subjects, while the high level of clarity separates the subjects from their stage.

The lack of colour is what makes this preset special. Use it for cinematic sports shots where teams or sides don’t need to be clearly defined.

7 players on a basketball game, waiting for one of them to throw the ball.


You might need to try out several Adobe Lightroom Presets for your sports photography. There are a lot of different kinds of sports, played in different locations and light conditions. So there is no such thing as one ultimate Lightroom Sports Preset, but there are definitely top ones.

You can get some of these presets for free. But even the paid ones are affordable and worth the investment.

If you’re a sport’s photographer who uses Lightroom professionally, you can even create your own preset. You can even try using your favourite preset to help define the look of your social media account!

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