Everyone knows how to take a selfie, don’t they…? Phone in selfie mode, stretch your arm out in front of you & snap! But what if I told you that there were some simple tricks to help you? Here I’m going to let you in on a few secrets on how to take a good gym selfie.


The single most important element of any photograph, whether professional or selfie, is light. Photography is all about capturing light & if you don’t have enough of it you won’t have a photo. To take a good gym selfie you want to make sure you are well lit whilst staying away from harsh lighting.

The best light is natural light. Stand facing the window, the gym behind you & see how the light streaming in makes you glow. Whilst you want the right light, you also want to avoid shadows. A shadow from the squat rack cutting across your face doesn’t look so good!

If you want to emphasis your figure, try standing with the main light source to your side. You may have to try a few poses to get the perfect angle. The shadows created by the side light falling on you will help define your physique. Turning the photo to black and white is also a great way to show shape & tone.

How to take a good gym selfie: A secret trick to make it look like you have your own personal photographer!

Selfies are great, but they can be awkward. Awkward to take, awkward to pose for. And in the gym when you are working out, sometimes you want more than just your face in the photo.

Here’s my secret.


It’s so simple you’ll wonder why you’ve not thought of it before.

Choose where you want to take your selfie (remember the light) & find something to prop your phone on – this could be the weights rack, a plyo box dumbbell or even the windowsill.

Pop your phone onto self-timer & press the button to take a photo. You have ten seconds to get into position. On an iPhone, a light by the lens flashes as the seconds count down.

Pose, smile & snap!

Your phone will take a burst of ten photos so hold your pose for a second or two.

This is a great way of showing full body poses in your selfies without the embarrassment of asking another gym-goer to snap your picture. Self-timer selfies are also great at capturing movement. Get the skipping rope out or try a squat jump. (Although jumping does take a bit of practice to get the timing just right!)

You can then choose the best photo, delete the rest, and hey presto a gym selfie that looks like you had your own personal photographer in the gym with you!

Find your perfect angle

There is no one ‘best’ pose that works for everyone. You want to find the perfect angle that highlights your strong points.

Standing facing the camera head-on makes your body look wider, try angling your body slightly away from it. A slight angle, especially when lit from the side, will help emphasis your physique.

Try holding your arms slightly away from your body to make them appear slimmer & give some shape to your figure. Avoid shooting from below as it is never ever a flattering angle.

It adds pounds & creates double chins where there are no double chins. If you’re using the self-timer trick find something at eye level to rest your phone on.

I suggest taking some time to experiment with different poses & expressions in front of the mirror.

Think about your background

Before you snap, have a quick glance at the background of your picture. You don’t want a guy deadlifting a PB behind your yoga pose to ruin your perfect selfie. And if you’re taking a mirror selfie in the locker room, make sure your mate isn’t half-naked in the background!

Always consider the people around you before taking a selfie because some might be sensitive about it & not want to appear in the background. It’s also good practice to do a quick check for stray towels, water bottles & cleaning equipment spoiling the ambience of your photo.

The only thing left to do now if find that perfect filter & upload your gym selfie to social media!

About The Author

Ally Whitlock is a photographer based in Croydon, South London. She specialises in branding photography for fitness professionals and you can follow her on Facebook and Instagram, too.