The 10 Most Popular Sports in Canada

Table of Contents

The wide array of sporting competitions in Canada provides Canadians with the best opportunities to highlight their skills and prevail in global tournaments.

This article will outline the top 10 most popular sports in Canada, in no particular order. Let’s dive in!

What are Canadians’ favourite sports?

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1. Ice Hockey 

Ice Hockey is an all-year-round sport in Canada.

Modern ice hockey in the region started in the 19th century, and it is still a great pastime for all ages.

In fact, during the 2021/22 season there were over 513,000 registered ice hockey players in Canada according to the International Ice Hockey Federation.

In 1893, Canada founded the Stanley Cup, now considered the top prize in professional ice hockey.

Ice Hockey is a religion in Canada and it is by far the most popular sport to watch and play. The highest level of Ice hockey is the National Hockey League, or NHL.

2. Golf 

In golf, players use different clubs to hit balls into a series of holes in as few strokes as possible.

Since there’s no set playing area in this sport, a vital aspect of the game is adapting to the topography of different courses.

Recreational courses may only involve 9 holes, but standard golf courses have an organised sequence of 18 holes.

It has become one of the globe’s leading golfing countries, with over 1.5 million golfers in Canada.

3. Curling 

Curling is a famous sport in Canada, particularly in the Prairie Provinces, which is home to numerous illustrious teams.

Players slide stones across the ice to reach a circular target area. Shuffleboard, bowling and boules are also connected to curling.

The sport was first introduced to the region from Scotland, and it has been associated with the Armed Forces.

4. Basketball 

Among all the Canadian sports, basketball is one of the most popular.

Professional basketball in Canada started in 1946, and their national basketball competition features 30 teams.

Basketball is the second-most popular sport among Canadian millennials, according to Solutions Research Group, a market research organisation in Toronto.

5. Rugby 

Rugby was first introduced in Canada by the Royal Navy in 1823. Also known as Rugby Union, this team sport involves close contact and it relies on players running while carrying the ball. 

Even though the sport vanished for a while, it was re-introduced through the Canadian national team and a domestic league.

Both Rugby Union and Rugby League have grown in popularity since their re-introduction, and the Canadian Rugby League hosts many local and global competitions.  

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