Top 10 Most Popular Sports in America

Sports are an essential part of American culture. America, the land of dreams, is also the land of great sports. But what is the most popular sport in the country? Find out here!
Top 10 Most Popular Sports in America
Top 10 Most Popular Sports in America

Top 10 Most Popular Sports in America: Sports have been around since ancient times, and they continue to be one of the most significant topics of conversation today. In fact, we spend more time watching or playing them than anything else. 

America, the country that has won the most medals in the Olympics till now, places a top priority on sports. For them, it is not only a source of entertainment but a matter of pride, unity, and excellence. 

It is worth noting that, despite being one of the world's most popular sports, cricket is not among the United States' favorites. So, what game occupies the top spot? Let's find out.

The ranking is based on total viewership and active participation in the sport, based on the data published by

10. Wrestling

Major League: WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment)

Prominent Players: The Undertaker, Hulk Hogan, and John Cena


Wrestling is a hugely popular sport in America, especially professional wrestling. It is a dominant sport in the nation because of its adrenaline-packed action, drama, fights, and larger-than-life characters. WWE, the pinnacle of wrestling in America, has produced a slew of wrestling stars that have helped popularize the sport even further. 

9. Motorsports

Major League: NASCAR (National Association for Stock Car Auto)

Prominent Players: Fred Lorenzen, Fireball Roberts, Dale Earnhardt, and Richard Petty


Americans love adrenaline and adventure, which is why Motorsport ranks among the top most popular sports in the States. NASCAR is the North American sanctioning organization for stock car racing, which is responsible for making stock car racing a popular sport in the country. On average, it attracts millions of spectators. NASCAR's Cup Series often draws an eight million-person broadcast audience, as well as sold-out crowds at several tracks.

8. Tennis

Major League: The US Open

Prominent Players: Serena Williams, Venus Williams, and Naomi Osaka


Tennis is popular among both men and women. American tennis has given birth to some of the most well-known sports superstars of the contemporary era, including Venus Williams, Serena Williams, Andy Roddick, and many others. The milestones they have achieved indeed showcase America as a sport-loving nation.

7. Golf

Major League: The PGA Championship

Prominent Players: Tiger Woods, Jack Niklaus, Ben Hogan


Another popular sport in the nation is golf, sometimes known as the "rich people's game." It is a common belief that only the wealthy and elite may participate in the sport. The sport is accessible to everyone. Tiger Woods, whose name is known all over the world, is maybe the most famous golfer in the world.

6. Boxing

Major League: WBA (World Boxing Association)

Prominent Players: Muhammad Ali, Mike Tyson, and Joe Louis


The greatest boxers of all time in the world were Americans. What more reason do Americans need to love boxing? According to the Harris Poll (American market research and analytics company), which polled over 2000 respondents in 2021, about 33% of the respondents proclaimed their love for boxing, making it the 6th most popular sport in America.

5. Soccer

Major League: MLS (Major League Soccer)

Prominent Players: Christian Pulisic, Michael Bradley, and Landon Donovan


The fifth most popular sport in America is actually the most famous sport in the world. Soccer was not an immediate hit among American sports lovers. It took some time to love the sport, but now the game is gaining traction in the country. Though it is not as popular as the games mentioned above, it still has a whopping television viewership of 27.3 million and records a stadium attendance of over 20,000 fans. 


4. Ice Hockey

Major League: NHL (National Hockey League)

Prominent Players: Patrick Kane, Brian Leetch, and Mike Modano


Ice hockey is the fourth most popular sport in the United States, despite being far less prevalent than American football or baseball. Hockey is the most popular in North America (primarily Canada and the north) and Europe.

NHL is the highest and most popular level of men's hockey in North America. Talking about the sport’s significance, America won its first gold medal in the Winter Olympics with this sport. Hockey has since become one of the most popular indoor recreational sports, even more so with the invention of artificial ice rinks.

3. Basketball 

Major League: NBA (National Basketball Association)

Prominent Personalities: Michael Jordan, LeBron James, and Kobe Bryant


The third-most loved sport in the US is basketball, which is already pretty popular in the rest of the world. The NBA has cultivated some of the finest basketball players in the sport's history, such as LeBron James, Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, and Kobe Bryant. According to, over 11% of Americans have said basketball is their favorite sport. It also has a television viewership of about 26 million.

2. Baseball

Major League: MLB (Major League Baseball)

Prominent Players: Babe Ruth, Roger Clemens, and Hank Aaron


Baseball is one of the most popular sports around the globe. It is also the 2nd most popular sport in the US. Americans love baseball so much that it is also referred to as “America’s favorite past-time.” Baseball competition in America has been categorized into two levels: minor league baseball and big league baseball (MLB).

The league has 30 teams, split into the National League and the American League. Each team plays 162 regular-season games, and five teams from each league proceed to a playoff competition that culminates in the World Series.

1. American Football 


Major League: NFL (National Football League)

Prominent Players: Tom Brady, Lawrence Taylor, and Jim Brown


American Football (or simply Football) is the most popular sport in the US. Although the sport is unique to the country, it developed from two other sports, soccer and rugby. In 1869, two college teams, Princeton and Rutgers, played the first football match. The NFL organizes significant football competitions in the US. According to recent statistics, during the Sports Bowl 2022, the televised screening of American Football garnered over 99 million audiences, making it one of the most-watched sporting events in the world. 

Not only does the sport dominate the tv viewership, but it also has thousands of fans flocking to the stadiums to watch the game live. The league's annual revenue amounts to about $15 billion, making it the most profitable sports league in the world.

With the data available, we can safely conclude that the most popular sport in America is undoubtedly American Football. And like the country, its sports are just as diverse, united, and incredible. 

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