The game is popular in all corners of the world, but determining which are the most popular sports in the world is not a challenge. Sports are popular for many reasons. Staying healthy, for example, is often cited as a reason to exercise. Others will tell you that they play games for entertainment.
Sports are even more popular with people who do not necessarily participate in them, but prefer to be spectators, directly or indirectly influenced by the sport. Sport is an important part of our culture, and Brazil has one that stands out from the rest: football.
From time immemorial, people have been influenced and inspired by extraordinary human beings capable of performing tremendous athletic feats, which can be seen historically since the ancient Greek Olympics. In this article, we discuss the most popular sports in the contemporary world.
Football is the most popular sport in the world with around 4 billion fans. Like some of the other sports on this list, football as we know it originated in England in the 19th century, although history indicates that people were playing similar games in China over two thousand years ago. One of the reasons for soccer’s popularity is that unlike other sports that require expensive equipment, you only need a ball and your feet to play soccer. So anyone, rich or poor, can enjoy the game. It is played all over the world, but is especially popular in Europe, Central and South America, and Africa.
The number of cricket fans is 2.5 billion. The sport is most popular in the UK and some former British colonies, particularly India, Pakistan and Australia. Like baseball, it involves two teams, one bat, a large pitch, and runs scored. However, the center of a cricket pitch also includes a long rectangular pitch, where the ball is thrown at the batsman, while facing the batsman on home plate, as opposed to a mound in the center of a baseball pitch.
Hockey, both on the ice and on the field, has two billion fans. Field hockey is mainly played in Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia, while ice hockey is particularly popular in Canada, the Americas and Northern Europe. The game involves two teams trying to hit the ball into the opposing team’s net with a hockey stick. Unlike ice hockey, field hockey generally does not involve physical contact in the form of control.
It is estimated that one billion people worldwide follow tennis and connect all over the world. In tennis, players on either side of a long net try to hit a ball with a racket so that it either passes to their opponents or bounces twice off their opponents’ side to score points. Professional tennis players like Roger Federer and Serena Williams are now known all over the world.
Volleyball involves two teams, each on either side of an elevated net, trying to “steal” a ball from the opposing team to score points. The game has 900 million followers, mainly in North America and Western Europe, but also in Asia, Australia and South America. A popular version of the game, known as beach volleyball, is played on the sand with two people on each team, unlike regular volleyball where each team usually has six players.
6. Table tennis
Think of it like tennis, except what amounts to a table with a net in the center and players on either side trying to get the ball past their opponents. Also known as ping pong, table tennis originated in England in the early 20th century. The game is now popular worldwide with around 875 million followers. It is particularly popular in Asia, but is also followed in Europe, Africa and the Americas.
Invented by James Naismith, a Canadian who taught in a school in the United States at the end of the 19th century, basketball is now played all over the world and has around 825 million fans. In basketball, two teams attempt to dribble a ball across a court and toss it into a hoop-shaped net to score points. If you like running, jumping and shooting, you will love basketball. Like football, it is particularly popular because the equipment requires no more than two baskets and a ball, and is therefore an accessible sport regardless of class.
The American national pastime is believed to have originated from the English game, rounder and cricket. Baseball involves two teams attempting to hit the ball with one bat between two white lines, with the batters running around a series of bases to score runs (runs). Today, baseball is popular not only in America, but also in East Asia and Latin America. The game has an estimated audience of 500 million fans.
Rugby has an estimated audience of 475 million people. The sport originated in England and is now more popular in the UK and other Commonwealth countries like Australia and New Zealand. In rugby, two teams attempt to kick, carry or pass the ball over the goal line to score points. Rugby is a contact sport that involves a lot of tackling, similar to American football. But while football players use a lot of padding and hard hats to protect themselves, rugby players use very little protection.
An estimated 450 million people are fans of the sport, which involves trying to hit a small ball into a hole in as few strokes as possible. Golf was born in Scotland in the 15th century. Interestingly, the word golf is derived from the word ‘Kolf’ or ‘Kolwe’ in the Netherlands, which translates to ‘club’. Golf is especially popular in Western Europe, East Asia and North America.