List of categories:
Stadium Team Sports
, Court Games
, Target Ball Games
, Combat Sports
, Target Sports
, Motor Sports
, Water Sports
, Winter Sports
, Activity & Adventure Sports
, Animal Sports
Stadium Team Sports
Includes those sports that are played either in stadiums or in large outdoor areas, usually because they are played by teams consisting of at least 10 players per side and require large pitches. They are often some of the most popular spectator sports, attracting as many as 100,000 people.
Includes those games played on courts, either indoor or outdoor, as well as table tennis, which is not played on a court but is closely related to tennis. They are mostly played with rackets or hands hitting balls through or over nets or against walls.
Target Ball Games
These sports involve using a ball to hit a target, whether it be knocking over skittles or trying to get a golf ball into a small hole. Some of them, such as snooker and pool, are played on tables with pockets as targets, while others are played outdoors, with the golf course being one of the biggest arenas in sport.
This area comprises running, jumping and throwing events, either in a specialized stadium or on more open terrain (cross-country running, for example). It also includes multi-discipline events such as the modern pentathlon, triathlon and ironman, which include swimming, but are grouped here because they are chiefly races between athletes.
This category involves sports which require competitors to perform set moves either on the floor or in the air, requiring a high level of flexibility, suppleness and strength. Trampolining is included because it is a form of gymnastics performed in the air, and the same applies to acrobatics to some extent.
Most of these sports are derived from genuine forms of combat but have been refined to make them highly-formalized disciplines with the element of danger reduced as much as possible. They are mostly performed between two competitors, with the object being to score points rather than to hurt or maim the opponent.
These are sports that involve a target but not a ball. Shooting and archery originated as forms of combat but live targets are no longer used in sporting events. Darts may be considered by some to be merely a pub game, but it is the same in principle as archery.
As well as recognized motor sports like Formula One, rallying and motorcycling events, this section also covers powerboat racing and aerobatics (flying). The latter two could have been included under Water Sports or Activity & Adventure Sports, but have more in common with other motorized forms of racing.
The common thread running through these sports is that they all take place in or on water, either in some form of floating vessel (rowing, canoeing or yachting) or with the competitor immersed in water (swimming or diving). Synchronized swimming has close links with gymnastics, but is officially classified as a swimming event.
Winter sports all originated in cold, wintry weather, usually on snow or ice, but many of them can now be performed throughout the year in carefully regulated conditions. Ice hockey and figure skating, for example, played all year round at indoor stadiums.
Activity & Adventure Sports
The common feature of many of these sports is a sense of action and adventure, and there are obvious dangers attached to sports such as ballooning, mountaineering, hang-gliding and parachuting. Others, such as sand-yachting and skateboarding, are less dangerous, but are characterized as all-action sports.
A wide range of sports involve animals - from straightforward racing, with horses, dogs or birds, to complex and highly disciplined equestrian events such as dressage and eventing. Many of these sports involve partnerships between humans and animals, whilst angling is the only one which involves the animal as a "target".