From ancient Egypt to the first Olympic Games in Greece, sports are one of the most valuable activities for humanity and, for children especially, it’s one of the foundations of a positive physical and mental development throughout their lives. Whether it’s running, playing tennis, or doing gymnastics, sports are a great asset for kids education. In this lists of sports you’ll find all the vocabulary in English related to the main disciplines, competitions, and games, so your little ones can start learning right away about this essential topic.
What is a sport?
There are many different sports disciplines around the world, some more known than others. However, to learn about these it could be a good idea to first answer the main question “What is a sport?” A sport is an activity that is competitive and athletic, and which requires some particular set of skills or physical abilities to be carried out.
There are several types of sports, usually divided by four main categories according to the types of skills required: physical sports (swimming, gymnastics), motorised sports (these often involve vehicles like cars or motorbikes), mind sports (like chess, which needs a lot of attention and critical thinking skills), and sports with animals (horseback riding, for example). Some of these activities can be individual, and others may be performed on couples or even teams. Now, let’s take a look at the main sports there are and some vocabulary about sports in English
Why are sports important?
Sports are deeply ingrained in the different cultures found around the world. Learning about sports helps the little ones get to know more about their surroundings, breaking down language and cultural barriers as they get to know new vocabulary and expressions as they practice their favorite disciplines. Moreover, practicing a sport is the perfect way for children to learn about sportsmanship, and also to grasp the importance that teamwork has in a person’s life.
Additionally, children that grow up practicing a sport develop great physical skills, are more inclined to make new friends have improved self-esteem and lower levels of stress, which in turn is quite beneficial for their mental health. So, sports are not only great for the body, but also for children’s mind.
Let’s take a look at some sports vocabulary in English, from the name of sports to items related to them.
mixed martial arts
Even though a sport is -in general- a physical activity, there is also another type of activities that aren’t considered sports. These, despite requiring a physical effort to be performed, aren’t regulated and organized, unlike sports. Moreover, some sports activities like the decathlon, also aren’t sports, but instead, they are formed by various events and challenges of different sports. Let’s check out the most common ones.
Now, let’s take a look at some vocabulary that’s frequently used in different sports and disciplines.
Now that your little one is learning vocabulary about sports, there’s another important issue related to this topic: how to talk about sports in English. In this language, there are three different verbs in English that can be used to talk about sports. Let’s take a look at these.
When talking about team sports, ‘play’ is the verb to use. Usually, the sports that go with ‘play’ are those that need a ball or some other similar equipment to be played. For example: “Let’s play football!” or “Do you want to play volleyball tomorrow?”
Some of the most common sports that go with play are tennis, football, golf, cricket, basketball, volleyball, chess.
This verb is used when talking about a sport that’s done individually instead of in a team. Some examples of these sports are aerobics or martial arts. “I do martial arts on Sundays.”
The most common sports in this group are karate, athletics, archery, gymnastics.
This is the correct option to refer to a sport that ends in -ing, like swimming or skating. For example, “Marcia and Alex are going swimming on Saturday.”, or “The girls go skiing in the winter.”
Among the most common sports in this category are cycling, swimming, dancing, snowboarding, running, fencing.
Find out all the fun stories here in English for kids.