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Sports Photographers


The Olympic Games are generally credited as being the first organized sports. However, popular support for organized sports developed slowly. Prior to the 19th century, most sports were not officially organized; there were no official rules, competitions, or standards of play. During the 19th century, however, many sports underwent a transition from invented pastime to official sport. Rules governing play, the field of play, and competitions were agreed upon. The first modern track-and-field meet, for example, was held in England in 1825. Meanwhile, in the United States the English game of rugby evolved into American football. The first game was played between Rutgers and Princeton in 1869.

As organized sports grew in popularity, governing bodies and organizations were created to oversee the fair play of each sport. With this organization came public interest in the games. Gradually, coverage of sporting events on radio and in newspapers began to grow until sports quite literally became the national pastime for Americans. Newspapers assigned specialized reporters to capture sporting events to ensure complete and thorough coverage. Trained photographers were also sent to local and national events to capture pictures that evoked the achievements of the sporting world's greatest athletes. Sports photographers are still hired to take pictures of all levels of sports, from neighborhood tee-ball to the World Series. The advent of digital photography and smartphones has enabled more people to capture sports in action, but professionally trained photographers continue to be needed by sports-related media companies.

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