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Sometimes I wish I could bring my camera with me on my running sessions. I am just afraid of constant bumping in my backpack - although the camera would be protected and no other object in the backpack, it will still bump on every step during my run, at least on my back.

Would it be safe to bring a camera when running? Is there a risk of damaging the camera? Would bumps hurt any mechanics in the camera? Lens positions?

And I am talking about the 'small' cameras, that any sane person would bring to a hike or run. Like Fuji X100T, Leicas, Canon EOSM... Of course I don't mean running with a full 10kg backpack of equipments. And I don't mean sport cameras, like GoPro. Once again, I think about a camera that might cost from e.g. 500 euros and that you wish to last for 2-3 years.

  • Please go running with a 600mm f/4 lens... have someone video it cause I want to see it on youtube. – Matthew Whited May 24 '16 at 14:05
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    Sure @MatthewWhited, just send me one and I will do that for you and the youtube :) PM me for the address! – igor May 24 '16 at 15:10
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    I (day) hike with >10kg of camera kit in a backpack, tripod slung rifle-style. I don't recommend running very far or fast like that. – Chris H May 24 '16 at 18:42
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    I often bring my LX-5 with me in my backpack doing mountain bike --- till now it survived well. And I can assure you that there are bumpy trails around here... – Rmano May 24 '16 at 19:27
  • I'm still waiting for the worlds scientists to make one of these en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bag_of_holding – Matthew Whited May 25 '16 at 14:09
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If it's bumping around you've packed it wrong, but it's highly unlikely to suffer.

For running with a backpack even more than for hiking, your load should be stable. This means the bag shouldn't be too big and should be full or strapped up tight. If you're planning to run, then stop and shoot for a few minutes, you might find yourself wanting an extra layer of clothing. So put the camera in a suitable pouch, wrap it in a jacket and put it in your bag.

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  • By the way, although this was based on the clarification that it's mainly about compacts, I would apply it to a smallish/cheapish SLR/lens combination at least if I wasn't worried about falling over. – Chris H May 24 '16 at 14:16
  • And if you don't need a jacket, there are such things as neoprene camera wraps/cases. I use them all the time when throwing my GX7 or X100T into my purse or messenger bag instead of hauling a full-blown camera bag along. Given that cameras don't come with leather cases any more :), this is the best modern alternative I've found. – inkista May 24 '16 at 19:24
  • @inkista I also have some microfibre bags which are worth it for keeping lenses from banging together in this sort of situation. – Chris H May 24 '16 at 19:53
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It's hard to say without knowing the specific model of camera that you are considering taking with you on your run, but I think that for the most part any compact, point and shoot camera should be able to take that kind of repeated impact.

@Chris H had a good suggestion that I'll expand on a little bit: When you put the camera in your backpack, wrap it up in a sweatshirt or another thick piece of clothing and that should keep it totally protected from the amount of jostling it would get on an average run.

I will point out though, that if you go for a run with a camera bouncing off the small of your back with every step you take, chances are that you'll damage your back before you damage the camera.

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