Canada is a country that is most known for its gorgeous scenery, friendly culture, and varied nature. However, Canada also has a huge sports culture.
The great white north has a few sports whose origins are unique to the nation and some others that found popularity elsewhere. Mostly as a result of once being a dominion of the British Empire. Either way, you are almost guaranteed to bump into a sports fan in Canada. Here are just some of the country’s biggest sports.
It shouldn’t come as a huge surprise to anyone that ice hockey is one of the most popular sports in Canada. The country has the weather to support such an activity and the passionate fans are happy to experience the cathartic release of players getting pumped on the field.
Ice Hockey, as we know it today, was not invented in Canada as most people would suspect. That honor goes to Scotland. However, Canada is praised for adopting the sport in the early 19th century and modernizing it into the sport we know it to be. The game also has some roots in Canadian folklore. It may also be popular in this part of the world because there are just under 3000 ice rinks across the country. This means that anyone can pick up a stick and play.
The sport of curling is not one that many people think about until the Winter Olympics roll around. Another sport believed to have originated in Scotland, curling involves rolling stones across the ice toward a target. Of course, any sport that involves ice is going to grab the attention of Canadians.
The ice required to play this sport is readily available all across Canada, which means that anyone can give curling a go for themselves. It is so prominent a sport that the natives adopted the sport as early as 1807, a full sixty years before Canada even became a country. Curling is so popular in Canada that the Olympic team often performs extremely well each year. They even managed to secure the bronze medal at the 2022 games.
Golf is a sport that is not for everyone. However, the Canadians love it. Yet another sport that was invented in Scotland, Canada currently has over two thousand golf courses.
Although golf is popular across the entire globe, Canada adopted the sport early in 1873. Many people believe that golf is popular in Canada because it is a game that needs to be played over a wide area that features a variety of terrains. If there is one place on Earth that this description perfectly details, it is Canada. However, many Canadians prefer to play a shorter nine-hole game rather than a traditional eighteen holes.
If there was any sport that you would expect Canada to adopt from their Southern neighbor, it would be football. Instead, Basketball is the American sport that Canadians are most fond of. Canadians can still learn more about American football though, especially by looking at NFL lines, for example. But why isn’t basketball as popular as football? Perhaps that is because basketball is a game that can be played indoors away from the cold.
Although Canada has its own professional league, two of its resident teams have been picked up in other competitions. In 1994, both the Toronto Raptors and Vancouver Grizzlies were given NBA franchises. That is probably one of the best accolades that a basketball team outside of the US could receive.
Anyone looking at popular sports in a country would expect to find that people love to play a game that was actually invented there. That is why so many people in Canada love lacrosse.
This odd game with sticks was first established in the mid-1800s in Canada. However, the game didn’t evolve into the field sport we know today until the 1930s. Even though this makes lacrosse a relatively new sport, it is still played by more than 100,000 people in Canada.
It may seem weird to put cricket on a list of popular sports in Canada because cricket is popular everywhere. Although, cricket gets a special mention because it is the send most popular sport in Canada, behind ice hockey.
The popularity of cricket likely stems from its simplicity and availability. All you need to play is a bat and a ball. However, Canada has earned a spot in the cricket world cup on four separate occasions. The last time they played cricket on the world stage was in 2011.
Many of the most popular sports in Canada are to be expected. However, there aren’t many people who would have expected so many of their favorite sports to have originated from Scotland. Although, Canada’s love of ice hockey does prove that it doesn’t matter where a game comes from. The locals can still go crazy for it, nonetheless.