The Sports Vocabulary That You Need

Author: Robert Bell

There are many different ways of improving your English that are great fun. Perhaps the best idea of all is to focus on what you most enjoy doing.

If you love music, then you can learn the lyrics to your favorite songs. If you are a fan of movies, then pay close attention to the dialog on-screen. What if you are a big sports fan, though? What new words should you add to your vocabulary?

Football Vocabulary

In the USA, football is a sport that involves running over the opponent’s goal line with the ball in your hands or catching it once you are there. This action is called a touchdown when it is completed. It is also possible to kick the ball through the goal, which is called a field goal.

Other countries call this sport American football. This name differentiates it from the sport that the Americans call soccer but that most other English-speaking nations – and the other Europeans and Latin Americans too – know it as football.

The NFL (National Football League) is the name of the most popular football league in the USA. This is the professional sports league with the highest revenue in the world. It is made up of 32 teams split over the NFC (National Football Conference) and AFC (American Football Conference).

The highlight of the football year is the Super Bowl match, where the champions of the 2 different conferences (NFC and AFC) play each other. Before this, the football betting is carried out on the regular season from September until the end of the year.

Basketball Vocabulary

This sport began in the USA and is now hugely popular all over the planet. The NBA is the most famous league, featuring 30 teams from different parts of North America.

A foul is when a player makes illegal contact with an opponent. This leads to a free throw, giving the team that was fouled the chance to score unopposed.

An assist is when a player provides the pass that allows a team-mate to score. The hoop is the metal rim through which the ball has to pass for a shot to count. When the ball bounces back from the hoop or the backboard, this is called the rebound.

Teams attempt to stop rivals from scoring through guarding. This is when someone follows an opponent to stop him from playing freely. Blocking is when you get in the way of a shot or pass, to stop it going where it was meant to.

Soccer Vocabulary

Soccer is the name given to this sport in the US, but it is called football in other countries. Two teams of 11 players each attempt to put the ball into their opponent’s goal. The game ends when the referee – the person who officiates the game and ensures fair play – blows the final whistle. In some other sports, the name used is umpire instead of referee.

Each team is made up of players in specific positions. These include goalkeeper, full backs, and midfielders. As with most sports, the coach is the experienced person who decides who plays in the team and how they are set up.
The field (also known as the pitch in some countries) is split up into different areas through the use of white lines. The center circle is the part where the game starts and also where play is resumed after each goal. The penalty area marks the place that the goalkeeper is expected to control.

By understanding the word and phrases used in your favorite sports, you can enjoy them even more. Best of all, this won’t even feel like you are studying at all.

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Manjusha Nambiar

Hi, I am Manjusha. This is my blog where I give English grammar lessons and worksheets.

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