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English Vocabulary – Sports

The following short text includes many words from the English vocabulary associated with sports and sporting events. Some of the words are explained at the end of this piece.

English vocabulary associated with sport

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.


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

e.g. 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.

Spectators – people who watch a sport.

e.g. 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.

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

e.g. 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 break a record – 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.

e.g. 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.

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

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


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