IELTS Sports Vocabulary Words

The following short text includes many words from the IELTS Sports vocabulary. You can find some of the words explained at the end of this text. If you scroll down further, you will also find English Phrasal Verbs related to Sports.

Scroll down and watch a video lesson that will help you learn verbs for talking about SPORTS in English.

IELTS Sports Vocabulary Words and Phrases

IELTS Sports vocabulary. English words and expressions to talk about sports. #learnenglish #englishlessons #tienganh #EnglishTeacher #vocabulary #ingles #อังกฤษ #английский #aprenderingles #english #cursodeingles #учианглийский

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English Reading Comprehension

Sport is one of the most popular topics discussed by men and women all over the world. Sport is an important  event or past time to improve our health and help us to forget about the stresses and strains of our busy lives. We also like to get our children involved as early as possible so that they too can benefit from an activity that they may well continue into their adult lives. Most sports are done by people in an amateur capacity and only in their recreation time after work or at weekends.

However, professional sport is a big money business all over the world with sports such as Football, Golf, Tennis and Baseball offering big paydays for those gifted participants. Spectators of these sports also generate large amounts of money when they attend the games and buy replica jerseys and other  memorabilia connected with those sports.

The pinnacle of an athletes career is to participate in some of the  worlds’ biggest sport events. These can include the Olympic games (both Summer and Winter games), the football world cup and the major tennis and golf competitions held throughout the year. Athletes often  train for many years in preparation for such tests and the make huge personal sacrifices in an attempt to achieve their goal. The award of a “big cheque” is usually of secondary importance to the prize of lifting a trophy hearing the crowd cheer them on or indeed breaking a record. Competing against a clock or defending their number one position against other contestants is often the only motivation needed.

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Sports Vocabulary Words


Items linked to a sport that people like to collect such as jerseys, bats, photos, caps etc

ex. He attended his first baseball game on his visit to America. He went to the gift shop and bought some memorabilia connected to the game.


people who watch a sport.

ex. The game was a sell-out. The organisers were expecting a full house. Approx 20,000 spectators were expected to turn up on the night.


A person who takes part in a sport and receives no money or payment.

ex. He liked to play football with his friends at the weekend. They played for fun, they were amateurs and did not take it too seriously.


To beat a previous time in a sporting event. The time has to be recognised and accepted by the people who control that particular sport.

ex. The sprint record had stood for 4 years. However, on the last day of the games he ran a really fast time and broke the record by 1 second. The time was confirmed by the marshalls and was an official new world record.

Sports Vocabulary Words

IELTS Sports vocabulary. English words and expressions to talk about sports. #learnenglish #englishlessons #tienganh #EnglishTeacher #vocabulary #ingles #อังกฤษ #английский #aprenderingles #english #cursodeingles #учианглийский

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Sports Vocabulary Words


To shout, cheer and support your team or sporting hero.

ex. John went with his father to watch the game and cheer on his local team in the cup final. 

Other Sports Vocabulary words you need to know:


These are similar roles in most sports. They are the officials usually in the centre of the field who ensure that the rules are obeyed and followed and to ensure both teams play fairly.

In English football the main official is referred to as a referee and he has two assistants (referees assistants) who run along the lines and a fourth official off the field who is responsible for the time keeping, substitutes etc.

In American baseball the officials are referred to as umpires. In American football the officials are also called referees or judges and in English cricket there are 2 umpires on the field at all times.

ex. The umpire told her that she was 5 minutes late and she was getting 2 penalty points.

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these are the prizes teams or individuals compete for in their different sports. Trophies can also be referred to as Cups, silverware, plates and in one sport the winner is awarded a green jacket to wear. So normally in English football teams play in several competitions each year and the winner of each competition receives a trophy known as a cup. The FA cup, for example. Traditionally, the winning team fills it with Champagne and each of the winning team enjoy a drink from it.

In other sports the trophy may have a different shape. For example, in Wimbledon (Tennis) the winners receive a large circular trophy in the shape of a plate or shield.


the surface where these sports are played


A person who supports a particular football team, attends all the games and usually cheers up loudly. Since 1960s British football fans have a bad reputation around the world and often are referred to as “hoolifans” – a mix of hooligans and fans.


You have achieved the best result so far in a particular sport

ex. He achieved his personal best time for the 800 metres.


Effortlessly win a competition

ex. In their first year they literally blew the competition away at every level.


The result of the match have been already predetermined, one of the teams (or athletes) were paid to lose the match.

Verbs for talking about SPORTS in English - Video Lesson

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Sports Phrasal Verbs


To leave a race or competition

You can also drop out of college or university.


Stop doing, trying to do something


To take gentle exercise to prepare for something


To get nearer to someone/somebody one is chasing


To reach somebody ahead of you by hurrying


To pass something easily


To stop being part of something. To break away from the competition, for example.

IELTS Sports vocabulary. English words and expressions to talk about sports. #learnenglish #englishlessons #tienganh #EnglishTeacher #vocabulary #ingles #อังกฤษ #английский #aprenderingles #english #cursodeingles #учианглийский

More Information

For more information in English Expressions, English Phrasal Verbs and English Grammar Rules, check ou the following links:

How to talk about Winning in English?

English Sports Idioms

Adjectives that describe people and personality

Cricket and Englishmen

Whatever, whichever or whatsoever?

Intermediate English learners! Here is your chance to master English Grammar Tenses so you can speak English fluently and with confidence, sign up for 3 hour English Grammar Rules Refresher Course. Click on the link to read more.

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