The oldest sports in the world

Sports rank among the favorite pastimes for people to watch or participate in. How many times have you settled down on the sofa in front of the Super Bowl, or had a round of golf or game of tennis at the local country club? Sport is all around us, in the fabric of our society, and ranks as one of the principal forms of entertainment in the world. There are so many excellent sports out there these days, and some of them are wonderfully niche.

Due to how much TV has developed and grown over the past decade, we have access to more sports than ever before. We have no doubt you’re knowledgeable on your favorite sports from around the world, but, do you know what the oldest sports in the world are? We reckon there are quite a few sports in this category that you never knew were some of the oldest sports in the world. Check these out!


Wrestling is widely considered to be the oldest sport in the world, and this does make sense. It’s not a sport that would have required and specialist equipment or location, and we can imagine it was a good form of physical conflict to settle disputes. A text was found back in Egypt in the 1800s, that detailed the rules of wrestling, and seemed to date back to around 100-200 A.D., which means it would have been practiced in some form well before then! Professional wrestling was first thought to have been introduced in France in the 1830s and is one of the biggest sports in the world today.

The oldest sports in the world


Soccer governing body FIFA reckon that soccer has been around in some form or another for a long, long time! Of course, the versions played back then would be almost unrecognizable from the game we know and love today. There were a lot of games around in medieval times that involved kicking a ball, and, in 10th Century England, a game known as Mob Football was introduced. The slick, and star-studded leagues of Europe’s top nations seem a million miles away from this, but, soccer is actually one of the oldest sports of all time.


Javelin is also one of the oldest practiced sports, which again tracks, as it would have started out as a form of hunting with spears. It was practiced by the Romans, and the Ancient Mycenaeans, and is recorded as existing back in the times of the first Ancient Olympics, as far back as 8th Century BC. In recent, modern Olympics, the javelin is still one of the major field events. Finland actually holds the record for the most medals in javelin since the modern Olympics began, though they have not registered one since scooping silver in 2012.

The oldest sports in the world

So many sports have a place in history and have been played or practiced in some form since the dawn of time. It’s fascinating to see just how much these sports have evolved and developed over the years, and how different they are. These are just three of the oldest sports, and ones that are still popular and still played today. You can watch or take part in any of these sports in some form or another today, should it take your fancy.