Sports vocabulary

If you’re a sports fan, you probably already know the names of the most common sports. However, sports vocabulary is pretty broad. Think about all the types of sports out there: group, individual, extreme, aquatic, among others.

Do you dream of running the New York Marathon? What about going to support your favourite football team and keeping up with the commentary? Or maybe going to a game at Wimbledon? No doubt that in those contexts, knowing the lingo is more than useful.

That’s why we’ve prepared this article about sports. Ready? Here we go!

Names of Sports

Like we said before, you probably already know the names of the most common sports, however, it’s helpful to familiarize yourself with sports that may be more popular in other areas. How many of these do you know?

  • Acrobatics
  • Archery
  • Badminton
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Bodybuilding
  • Cycling
  • Diving
  • Fencing
  • (American) Football
  • Football (United Kingdom) / Soccer (United States)
  • Handball
  • Ice Hockey
  • Mountaineering
  • Parachuting
  • Sailing
  • Scuba Diving
  • Skating
  • Swimming
  • Table Tennis
  • Volleyball
  • Water Skiing


Now that you’ve expanded your vocabulary generally, why don’t we do a deep dive on aquatic sports?


Aquatic Sports

  • Watersports
  • Canoeing
  • Kayaking
  • Rowing
  • Surfing
  • Sailing
  • Swimming
  • Water Polo
  • Water Skiing

Did you know that the first signs of people swimming come from Egypt in the Pre Hellenic Period? Swimming formed part of a proper public education.



Action Sports

Action sports, or extreme sports, are sports that involve a high level of risk. These sports involve speed, height, a high level of physical exertion, and often require specialised equipment. Which extreme sports do you know?

  • Parachuting
  • Mountaineering
  • Bungee Jumping
  • Parkour
  • Abseiling
  • Surfing
  • Skateboarding
  • Rafting
  • Diving
  • Snowboarding
  • Mountain Biking
  • Skiing

Do you like extreme sports? Would you like to try parachuting at least once in your life?


Places Where Sports Are Played

Every sport has a specific type of place where it’s played. Next, we’ll show you the names of some of the places where the most well-known sports are played.

  • Tennis Court
  • Field
  • Pitch (UK; for rugby, soccer)
  • Basketball Court
  • Baseball Diamond
  • Golf Course
  • Stadium
  • Athletics Track
  • Pool
  • Ski Slope
  • Racecourse


Do you know what the largest racecourse in the world is? The Meydan Racecourse is found in Dubai and is considered the biggest in the world. It has a capacity of over 60,000 spectators and an area of 7.5 million square metres.


Sporting Equipment

The variety of sporting equipment is practically infinite. That’s why making a list of what you need to play sports is basically impossible. However, we can name some of the most common pieces of equipment and thereby motivate you to look into the equipment for your favourite sport.

  • Tennis Racquet (UK) / Tennis Racket (US)
  • Ball
  • Sneaker (US) / Trainer (UK)
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Football
  • Running Shoes
  • Shorts
  • Baseball Bat
  • Uniform
  • Helmet
  • Riding Boots
  • Boxing Gloves
  • Paddle
  • Rope
  • Jump Rope
  • Skateboard
  • Swimsuit
  • Club
  • Goal posts


Now, we’ll give you some examples of these terms in use:

You have to run with trainers.

Did you know that every club has different angles? 

In extreme sports, helmets are part of the safety equipment.

Expressions Related to Sports

Now let’s see some expressions related to sports that can also be used in other contexts. Practice these phrases to improve your pronunciation and elocution.

If they already decided what to do, the ball is in your court now.

For sure, we will have to find a way to tackle the problem.

We were happy because we were about to finish the plan, but the leader of the project moved the goalposts and now we have to start again.


We hope that this article has been interesting and that you’ve learned more sports vocabulary. Remember that, just like your favourite sport, to perfect your speaking, consistency and practice are necessary. Remember the famous proverb: No pain, no gain.

At ABA English, we’re ready to help you practice and refine your knowledge of the language in a fun and interesting way. So, you can do more than just enjoy your favourite sport—you can communicate and interact with confidence in any context.

Remember that ABA English goes with you everywhere; on your smartphone, tablet, and computer. What are you waiting for?


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