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Europe: most sporty countries


Sports in Europe

Sociologists say that on average in Europe, 39.7% of the population regularly (at least once a week) goes in for sports. However, there are countries where this figure is much higher.

Not so long ago, the European Commission conducted a study to determine the most healthy lifestyle in Europe.

1st place: Sweden

2nd place: Denmark

3rd place: Finland

4th place: Slovenia

5th place: Austria

But the leaders of the anti-rating were Bulgaria, Malta, and Italy. Residents of these countries, according to the observations of the European Commission, prefer to observe the achievements of professional athletes (for example, in football), rather than play sports on their own.

The most athletic countries in Europe

Sweden is considered the most sporting country in Europe. According to the survey, only 9% of Swedes ignore sports, while the rest of the residents support a healthy lifestyle to a greater or lesser extent. For example, 33% of men in Sweden regularly visit fitness rooms. And many ride a bike to work.

Popular sports in Sweden

  • handball
  • rowing
  • Weightlifting
  • cross-country skiing
  • hockey


Interestingly, the Ministry of Sports does not exist in this country at all, but this does not prevent the Danes from being one of the most athletic in Europe. There is a real healthy lifestyle cult in this country, and a special tax has been introduced on products containing more than 2.3% saturated fat.

Popular sports in Denmark

  • badminton
  • handball
  • Athletics
  • sailing
  • cycling


It is noteworthy that the humble Finns, according to the estimates of the UK Statistics Center, are not lagging behind the Swedes. More than 72% of Finns say that they attend various sports activities at least once a week.

Popular sports in Finland

  • athletics
  • cross-country skiing
  • motorsport
  • motorsport
  • hockey

2 person in yellow jacket and blue helmet riding ski blades on snow covered mountain during


Slovenia has many resorts, and the country itself is considered one of the best in Europe in terms of ecology. The average life expectancy of Slovenes is higher than the average for Europe: women – 84 years, men – 77 years – largely due to a healthy lifestyle.

Popular sports in Slovenia

  • hiking
  • cycling
  • water sports: rafting, canoeing
  • alpine skiing, snowboarding
  • golf


During warmer months, Austrians often spend their weekends in the mountains, horseback riding, and hiking. In winter, more than 800 winter sports centers operate here and an ideal infrastructure has been created. If the snow melts, its volume is instantly replenished from the snow cannons. Alpine skiing is studied in physical education lessons at school.

Popular sports in Austria

  • skiing
  • luge
  • swimming
  • sailing
  • rowing


Here 70% of the population from 15 to 74 years old go in for sports and lead an active lifestyle. There are dozens of sports organizations and clubs in the country, in which every 4th Swiss is a member.

Popular sports in Switzerland

  • skiing
  • luge
  • cycling
  • tennis
  • gymnastics

The Netherlands

According to researchers, 86% of Dutch people are adherents of a healthy lifestyle and go to gyms and clubs. There are dozens of arenas with artificial ice, tennis fields, bike tracks.

Popular sports in the Netherlands

  • skating
  • tennis
  • field hockey
  • swimming
  • cycling

We deliberately did not include football and fitness in the lists of the most popular sports in Europe, since they are equally popular in all European countries. For example, the largest number of fitness clubs is in Germany, there are 7600 of them. Italy is in second place: 6000 clubs. In third place is Great Britain: 5900 clubs. In fourth place – Spain: 4,600 clubs.

Where to go in for sports in Europe?

So, which country should you go to?





Cross-country skiing







Norway, Austria, Switzerland

Sweden, Austria, Finland

Slovenia, Switzerland, France

Switzerland, Netherlands, Germany

Netherlands, Austria, UK

Switzerland, Italy, France

Sweden, Austria, Croatia

Netherlands, Denmark, Norway

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