Japanese sports

Sport in Japan is an important part of Japanese culture. Traditional sports such as martial arts and Sumo have their roots in centuries past but the Japanese have also embraced Western sports as well. Football and Baseball have become hugely popular with spectators.


Sumo is Japans national sport and is known throughout the world as one of the most unique and exciting full-contact sports in existence. Sumo wrestling is a match of two large men facing off in a circular ring (dohyō). The man who can force the other out of the circle is the victor.

A wrestler can also win by making his opponent touch the ground with any part of his body other than the bottoms of his feet. Japan, the country that created the sport of sumo wrestling, is the only country that supports professional matches. Sumo is Japans national sport.

The amazing exhibition of physical power and the unique dedication to ancient ritual make sumo a very interesting and exciting sport to watch, whether on television or in person.


Since its introduction by American Horace Wilson in 1872, Baseball has become one of the most popular sports in Japan.  Baseball was adopted by Japanese Universities and the sport’s popularity exploded.

There are regular nationwide tournaments and the Professional Baseball leagues of Nippon Professional Baseball. Like in America there are two leagues called the Central and Pacific Leagues each consisting of six teams. High school baseball is also a big deal in Japan with the annual big tournaments generating just as much excitement as the professional games.

Martial Arts

Japan is the homeland for many of the world’s martial arts with the arts being refined by the samurai over the centuries. These days martial arts are practised all over the world with Judo being an Olympic sport.

Japan invented the styles of; Aikido, Takagari, Iaido, Judo, Jujutsu, Karate, Kemari, Kendo, Kenjutsu, Kyudo, Naginata, Yabusame and Shooto.