What Are the Most Popular Sports in Each Country?

Today there are 384 activities accepted as sports, some more and some less practiced around the globe. While you read this, it is certain that thousands of people are playing sports right at that very moment. However, have you ever wondered which sport is the most popular in each country? Are you curious to find out? Let’s go ahead and discover the most popular sports in each place.

Most popular sports in North America

Let’s start by talking about some of the most popular sports in North American countries.

Most popular sport in the USA

The most popular sport in the United States is American football with the professional teams competing in the National Football League. This sport allows us to have an incredible show every year with the Super Bowl and its memorable commercials. On the other hand, although it is the most popular to watch, it is actually not the most practiced one, with only 8.9 million participants compared to 30.3 million people playing basketball.

Most popular sport in Mexico

In Mexico, soccer is named the most popular sport in the country. We can even find the national team at 17th place (out of 239 records) in the ranking comparing the teams of the world. However, baseball is the sport most popular in the northern and southern regions of Mexico.

Most popular sport in Puerto Rico

Sports in Puerto Rico have been greatly influenced by the American and Spanish cultures. That is why the played sports are similar to the ones in the United States. Here, the most popular is baseball followed by basketball and boxing.

Most popular sport in Jamaica

Do you know Usain Bolt? This Jamaican runner holds the absolute record in the 100-meter run with his time being just 9.58 seconds and a speed of 43km/h. You have probably already guessed that the sport having the biggest interest in Jamaica is athletics. but maybe you didn’t know that there is a sport derived from basketball called netball which is quite popular as well.

Most popular sports in South America

Let’s continue with the South American countries and their most popular sports.

Most popular sport in Brazil

You probably know that soccer is the most popular sport in Brazil, but you should also know that it is revered and treated almost like a religion by all Brazilians. They are five times champions of the world cup and they are the only team with a ranking of 5 stars.

Most popular sport in Guyana

You know a sport where the rules for two competing teams are that one team throws the ball, and the other one hits it with the bat, right? The goal? To send the ball as far as possible so that his teammates have time to run. So we are talking about…? Cricket, of course! This is the most popular sport in Guyana.

Most popular sport in the Falkland Islands

Unlike other South American countries which almost all have soccer as their beloved sport (or at least one of the more popular ones), the Falkland Islands keep the rugby close to their hearts.

Most popular sports in Europe

Let’s cross the Atlantic and check what are the favorite sports of Europeans.

Most popular sport in France

Like most countries in the world, soccer is in the first place, and this is the case for France as well, which places soccer ahead of all other popular sports.

Most popular sport in Finland

Let’s forget for a moment about sports like soccer and basketball. In Finland, ice hockey is definitely the most popular one. The national team even ranks among the top international ice hockey teams.

Most popular sport in Romania

If I tell you again about a game with a bat, a ball, and players who have to send the ball as far as possible so that their teammates have time to run, maybe this time you will guess right. Whatever you guessed, it is still probably wrong… In Romania the traditional and popular sport is Oina! It is very similar to baseball but follows a bit different Romanian rules.

Most popular sports in Africa

Let’s continue our world tour of sports and go to Africa to discover some very popular sports there!

Most popular sport in Morocco

Like many African countries, Morocco’s most popular sport is soccer. No surprise there!

Most popular sport in Nigeria

Basketball is the second most popular sport in the country and the national teams many times got very impressive results. In addition, we find many Nigerian players in the NBA, such as Giánnis Antetokoúnmpo, Greek-Nigerian player champion in 2021 playing with the Bucks!

Most popular sport in South Africa

Among the most popular sports in South Africa, we can find rugby. So it is of no surprise, that the country’s team is three-time world champions.

Most popular sports in Asia

We are heading now to the continent of the rising sun and we will continue to learn new things together.

Most popular sport in Japan

One would think that sumo or one of the martial arts sports would be the most popular one in Japan, but it’s not the case. It’s actually baseball! Almost half of the Japanese population considers baseball their favorite sport.

Most popular sport in Indonesia 

In Indonesia, badminton is at the top of the list and Indonesian players are among the best in the world.

Most popular sport in Mongolia

Have you ever heard of Mongolian wrestling? It is the most popular sport, loved there almost as much as horse racing. It is a traditional Mongolian sport.

Most popular sport in Laos

Here is a sport that you probably don’t know about. It is called sepak takraw, and it is similar to volleyball but practiced without hands or arms. You have to hit the ball made of rattan with your feet, your knees, your shoulders, or your head. It is very popular in Southeast Asia and particularly in Laos.

Most popular sports in Oceania

The last places we would visit are the ones in the region of Oceania. Let’s see what people living there play and like to watch!

Most popular sport in Australia

Australian soccer – the most popular sport in Australia – is very similar to rugby. However, instead of a team of fifteen players, there are eighteen participants on each side.

Most popular sport in New Zealand

Do you know the All Blacks? If so, you have probably guessed that the most popular sport in New Zealand is rugby. No other sport can match the popularity it holds in the hearts of New Zealanders.

Summary: each country’s most popular sport 

Summing up we can say that soccer is definitely the most popular sport in the world. Still, some more traditional sports or imports from other countries still manage to take a place as the favorite ones in some of the places. A good example is Asia where the sports preferences seem to be more diversified.

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