School Sports Commentating Tips: Quickly Elevate Your Game

Great commentators bring a school sports game to life. They give the game a voice and personality. They keep spectators engaged and informed. 

The question is: how do you become one of the greats? 

We’re here to help you improve your commentating skills with a few tips and tricks. Continue reading this article to learn simple ways to bring charisma to your next commentating gig. Find out more below!

Know the Game

It may seem like a basic piece of advice, but many commentators jump into announcing a game they don’t know all that well. You might know the overview and can get away with it. However, if you want to be an amazing commentator, then you need to know more than the average Joe. 

Spend some time looking into the details of the sport you plan to commentate. Know how to recognize the flow of the game and the skills that go into playing it. 

All of this extra knowledge will help you keep the words going even when the game itself is in a lull. 

Know the Players

School sports broadcasting is more personal than any other type of broadcasting. Many spectators will feel a unique connection to the players on the field. They’ll want to hear the stories behind the different students and any rivalries that might raise the stakes. 

Your job as a commentator is to paint a story using the players as the colors on the canvas. 

Make sure you know the history behind each team as well as some anecdotes about each player. Knowing players’ names is only the beginning. Being able to sprinkle in stories or statistics during the broadcast will increase your production value as a commentator. 

Prepare Notes

Having a deep understanding of the game and the players can only take you so far. It’s a lot of information to keep in your head at one time. A simple statistic might escape your train of thought in the middle of a broadcast, leaving you with empty air. 

This is why notes are a commentator’s best friend. 

These notes can remind you of statistics and other information at a single glance. This helps you keep your flow going strong without stumbling over your words. 

Remember to keep those notes simple and easy to read. You don’t want to fumble with papers during a broadcast trying to find a single bit of information. To keep your entertainment value going without a hitch, find a note system that works best for you!

Pinpoint Difficult Skill Execution

When a student pulls off a difficult skill, it’s only fair that it gets pointed out to the crowd. High school sports thrive on the achievements of the students. You’ll need to get good at recognizing the skills that both showcase the student’s effort and get the audience riled up

Don’t forget to make good use of an instant replay to drive home the difficulty of the skill. It’ll give you a chance to be more detailed in your commentating. It also allows you to show the audience why it was such a feat in the first place. 

Use Vivid Imagery

Live sports commentary is all about storytelling. This means you should always make use of vibrant words and imagery to help sell your audience to the story you’re creating. 

Make good use of the five different senses so that the audience watching from home still gets the whole experience. 

Finding a balance between action and storytelling is something that defines your commentating style. Try messing with that balance until you figure out a ratio that works well for both you and your audience. 

Engage the Audience

Have you ever watched another broadcast and found yourself disinterested? A big reason this kind of disconnect occurs is that the commentator isn’t finding ways to keep the audience’s attention. 

An easy way to help keep your audience on their toes is by asking rhetorical questions. Did they see that pass? Did they notice the spin on the ball? 

These kinds of questions make spectators realize they’ve mentally tuned out of the game. It helps remind them to engage once again since you’ve pointed out they might have missed something big. 

It’s a simple trick that has lasting results for your broadcasting entertainment value. 

Watch Other Commentators

Every artist needs to pull inspiration from somewhere. For high school sports commentating, you should look to the greatest commentators of all time. 

Watch famous games and listen to how the commentators work their magic. Get a feel for how they keep the flow of the game going through their words. Notice what makes them enjoyable to listen to for hours on end. 

Once you pay attention to how the masters work, it’ll be a great pool of inspiration to dip into during your next broadcast. 

Share Your Passion

There’s nothing quite as exciting as listening to a commentator who’s obvious in their passion for the game and the players. You’ll need to tap into your own passion during every livestream. 

If you find yourself uninterested in the sport, then how can you ever hope to bring any excitement to your audience? 

Don’t be afraid to share your own stories or opinions on certain plays. This will show the spectators that you love the game enough to have extra thoughts beyond play-by-plays. 

It’s an excellent way to add more enthusiasm to the entire broadcast and makes the process fun for you too!

Practice Commentating with WSN Live

The final thing to remember is that practice will help you improve. Your commentating skills will increase by leaps and bounds with every game you narrate. Use these tips to bring your commentating to the next level, but don’t forget to enjoy the experience!

2010 was only the beginning of WSN Live’s school sports broadcasting journey. We continue to push towards the future of broadcasting with turnkey solutions and instant replays to make commentating a breeze. Contact us today to learn how we can help elevate your next livestream!