• Virginia Langhammer

Popular Sports in Brazil




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Everybody knows that soccer is the most popular sport in Brazil, but did you know that we have at least 4 different types of soccer?

In this lesson, you’ll learn more about different kinds of soccer and also other popular sports in Brazil.

1. Futebol (soccer)


Soccer is the most popular and most practiced sport in Brazil.

The most traditional soccer is the association football, but there are also many other types of soccer in Brazil. I’ll talk about the most common ones below.


2. Futebol de rua ou pelada (street soccer)


“Pelada” is a non-professional soccer game, with few rules, and it usually takes place in any open area, without the need for a court or field.


3. Futebol de areia (beach soccer)


As the name says, beach soccer is soccer played on the beach. Despite having become an official sport only recently, this type of soccer has been part of the life of Brazilians for a long time.


4. Futsal


Futsal is a soccer game played on sports courts, with only 5 players on each team, including 1 goalkeeper. This is the most practiced modality in Brazil because there are less players and it can be practiced in much smaller spaces.


5. Futevôlei (footvolley)


Footvolley is a very interesting sport because it’s a mix of soccer and beach volleyball. We can say that it’s playing volleyball with your feet. The teams are much smaller, usually only two or three players.


6. Vôlei (volleyball)


Volleyball is considered the second favorite sport of Brazilians and is second only to soccer in popularity.

Just like soccer, obviously, there is also a beach volleyball, which is played on the beach sand. If you go to a beach in Brazil, especially in Rio de Janeiro, you will always see people playing volleyball or footvolley on the beach.


7. Basquete (basketball)


Basketball is not as popular as soccer or volleyball, but it is also very popular in Brazil, especially in schools.


8. Automobilismo e Fórmula 1 (Auto Racing and Formula One)


Auto racing, especially Formula One, is very popular on Brazilian television, mainly thanks to the great Brazilian racers we had in the past, Emerson Fittipaldi, Nelson Piquet and Ayrton Senna.


9. Frescobol


As you may have already noticed, Brazilians love sports that can be played on the beach and frescobol is one of them. This sport was created on the beaches in Rio de Janeiro in the 1940s, but later it spread around the world.

Originally used only as an informal beach game, in the 90s, frescobol became an official competitive sport, with national and international championships.


10. Capoeira


Capoeira is an Afro-Brazilian martial art originally created by African slaves in Brazil. Capoeira is much more than a sport. It’s a cultural representation that mixes martial arts, dance and music.

In traditional capoeira, players make a circle, called capoeira circle. The movement or dance called “gingado” follows the rhythm of the music played in the berimbau, which is a string and percussion instrument of African origin.


11. Jiu-jitsu


Jiu-jitsu is a martial art of Japanese origin that uses traumatic strokes to immobilize the opponent. When it arrived in Brazil in the 1920s, the sport underwent some modifications.

Brazilian jiu-jitsu uses only ground fighting, which was just one of the techniques of traditional jiu-jitsu.

Other sports that are also popular in Brazil are judo, surfing, track and field, handball, boxing, skateboarding, swimming, tennis, among many others.

On the other hand, some sports that are popular in the United States and other places are not at all common in Brazil, such as American football and baseball, for example.

I hope you enjoyed learning a little about the sports that are most popular in Brazil. I’d like to know what you liked the most in this lesson. Do you like sports? What is your favorite sport? Leave a comment below with your answer.

Até a próxima!

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