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Have you ever delved into the energetic pulse of Vietnam?

It’s not just in its vibrant cities and flavorful cuisine!

When it comes to sports in Vietnam, soccer takes center stage.

But what else fuels the passion of the Vietnamese?

Explore the most popular sports in Vietnam with our list.

Most Popular Sports in Vietnam:

  1. Soccer
  2. Badminton
  3. Table Tennis
  4. Volleyball
  5. Swimming
  6. Martial Arts
  7. Chess
  8. Athletics
  9. Basketball
  10. Cycling
  11. Tennis

#1 Soccer

  • πŸ“… (Estimated) Year of Introduction in Vietnam: Early 1900s
  • 🌟Most Famous Player from Vietnam: Le Cong Vinh (Vietnamese)
  • 🌍 Estimated Number of Players in Vietnam: 1 Million

Soccer is undoubtedly the most popular sport in Vietnam, capturing the hearts of millions. The speed, skill, and drama of games keep fans glued to their screens or cheering in the stands.

The V-League, Vietnam’s top professional soccer league, showcases the country’s best talent, with fierce competitions and ardent fanbases. Vietnamese soccer icon Le Cong Vinh has inspired new generations with his illustrious domestic and international career.

Remarkable moments, like Vietnam’s 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup win and their 2019 AFC Asian Cup quarter-finals appearance, have etched soccer deeply into Vietnam’s cultural fabric.

#2 Badminton

  • πŸ“… (Estimated) Year of Introduction in Vietnam: 1950s
  • 🌟Most Famous Player from Vietnam: Nguyen Tien Minh (Vietnamese)
  • 🌍 Estimated Number of Players in Vietnam: 800,000

Badminton in Vietnam is a favorite sport played by both professionals and amateurs alike. Its combination of physical fitness, mental agility, and tactical mastery appeals to a wide range of individuals.

The Vietnam Open, a major tournament in the Badminton World Federation’s calendar, hosts top-notch international players, drawing significant attention. Nguyen Tien Minh, Vietnam’s badminton pride, has achieved remarkable success, securing top rankings and representing the nation in numerous international competitions.

With rising stars and an increasingly robust competitive scene, badminton continues to flourish in Vietnam.

#3 Table Tennis

Table Tennis
  • πŸ“… (Estimated) Year of Introduction in Vietnam: 1940s
  • 🌟Most Famous Player from Vietnam: Nguyen Anh Tu (Vietnamese)
  • 🌍 Estimated Number of Players in Vietnam: 600,000

Table tennis has built a solid foundation in Vietnam’s sporting arena, thanks to its accessibility and engaging gameplay. Enthusiasts of all ages enjoy the sport in schools, clubs, and parks across the country.

The Vietnam Table Tennis Federation organizes national and regional tournaments, fostering competition and camaraderie among athletes. Nguyen Anh Tu stands as one of Vietnam’s rising table tennis stars, impressing fans with his performances in both domestic and international events.

Vietnam’s potential in table tennis continues to grow, with more resources being dedicated to nurturing talent and achieving success on the world stage.

#4 Volleyball

  • πŸ“… (Estimated) Year of Introduction in Vietnam: 1950s
  • 🌟Most Famous Player from Vietnam: Nguyen Thi Ngoc Hoa (Vietnamese)
  • 🌍 Estimated Number of Players in Vietnam: 500,000

Volleyball’s exhilarating action and team dynamics make it a popular sport in Vietnam, enjoyed by players of diverse backgrounds and age groups.

The Vietnam Volleyball Federation conducts various leagues and tournaments throughout the year, fueling local interest in the sport. Pro player Nguyen Thi Ngoc Hoa has made a name for herself both domestically and internationally, turning heads with her exceptional skills.

The popularity of volleyball in Vietnam is well-founded, thanks to exciting gameplay and the growth of talented athletes making their mark in both national and international competitions.

#5 Swimming

  • πŸ“… (Estimated) Year of Introduction in Vietnam: Early 1900s
  • 🌟Most Famous Swimmer from Vietnam: Nguyen Thi Anh Vien (Vietnamese)
  • 🌍 Estimated Number of Swimmers in Vietnam: 1 Million

Swimming in Vietnam is both a popular recreational activity and a competitive sport. The country’s vast coastline and numerous pools provide ample opportunities for enthusiasts to take a plunge.

National leagues and championships witness the participation of many skilled swimmers, but Nguyen Thi Anh Vien shines brightest as a standout athlete, with multiple SEA Games gold medals and other international achievements to her name. Her performances in the pool have garnered widespread recognition and admiration.

In Vietnam, swimming continues to make waves due to its health benefits, accessibility, and the country’s thriving talent pool.

#6 Martial Arts

  • πŸ“… (Estimated) Year of Introduction in Vietnam: Ancient times
  • 🌟Most Famous Martial Artist from Vietnam: Cung Le (Vietnamese-American)
  • 🌍 Estimated Number of Martial Arts Enthusiasts in Vietnam: 2 Million

Vietnam has a rich martial arts tradition, spanning various disciplines such as Vovinam, Binh Dinh, and Taekwondo. Rooted in self-defense, discipline, and spirituality, martial arts enjoy widespread popularity in Vietnamese society.

In addition to local schools and clubs, international martial arts competitions showcase Vietnam’s skilled practitioners. Cung Le, a Vietnamese-American martial artist, represents the height of Vietnam’s prowess, excelling in various forms including wrestling, kickboxing, and MMA.

Martial arts hold a special place in Vietnamese culture, with their unique combination of physicality, strategy, and spiritual growth.

#7 Chess

  • πŸ“… (Estimated) Year of Introduction in Vietnam: 20th century
  • 🌟Most Famous Chess Player from Vietnam: Le Quang Liem (Vietnamese)
  • 🌍 Estimated Number of Chess Players in Vietnam: 300,000

Chess in Vietnam is revered as a game that sharpens the mind and encourages strategic thinking. With chess clubs and tournaments flourishing throughout the country, enthusiasts have ample opportunity to test their skills.

Le Quang Liem, Vietnam’s top chess player, has made a name for himself in international tournaments, winning accolades and high rankings, while inspiring many in Vietnam to pursue the game.

As chess maintains its appeal in Vietnamese society, the game’s rich blend of intellectual stimulation, skill, and strategy ensures its continuing popularity.

#8 Athletics

Track and Field
  • πŸ“… (Estimated) Year of Introduction in Vietnam: Early 1900s
  • 🌟Most Famous Athlete from Vietnam: Vu Thi Huong (Vietnamese)
  • 🌍 Estimated Number of Athletics Enthusiasts in Vietnam: 1.5 Million

Athletics have long held a special place in Vietnam’s sporting landscape, with various disciplines like track and field, long jump, and hurdles witnessing impressive talent and dedication from athletes.

The Vietnam Athletics Federation conducts numerous regional and national events, fostering competition and growth in the field. Notable athletes like Vu Thi Huong, a decorated sprinter, have brought pride to the nation with their achievements both locally and internationally.

Vietnam’s passion for athletics is evident in the ongoing commitment to training and competing, as well as the growing talent pool that continues to inspire the nation.

#9 Basketball

  • πŸ“… (Estimated) Year of Introduction in Vietnam: 1950s
  • 🌟Most Famous Player from Vietnam: Nguyen Van Hung (Vietnamese)
  • 🌍 Estimated Number of Players in Vietnam: 300,000

In Vietnam, basketball has steadily gained popularity among sports enthusiasts. The sport’s combination of athleticism, teamwork, and strategy has captured the interest of a growing fanbase.

The Vietnam Basketball Association (VBA) is the premier professional league in the country, featuring intense competition and entertaining games. Vietnamese player Nguyen Van Hung has garnered attention for his impressive playing style and contributions to the sport.

Vietnam’s youth are increasingly drawn to basketball, whether it’s through local games, foreign leagues, or international tournaments, making it a sport with a promising future in the country.

#10 Cycling

  • πŸ“… (Estimated) Year of Introduction in Vietnam: Early 1900s
  • 🌟Most Famous Cyclist from Vietnam: Nguyen Thi That (Vietnamese)
  • 🌍 Estimated Number of Cycling Enthusiasts in Vietnam: 2 Million

Cycling holds a special place in Vietnam, as both a leisure activity and a competitive sport. The country’s picturesque landscapes and well-maintained cycling paths make it a paradise for cyclists.

Vietnam has witnessed the rise of internationally acclaimed cyclists like Nguyen Thi That, who has brought numerous accolades to the nation. The annual HTV Cup, a professional road bicycle race, attracts fans and fuels the passion for cycling in Vietnam.

With its scenic routes and growing number of enthusiasts, cycling continues to be an integral part of Vietnam’s sports culture.

#11 Tennis

  • πŸ“… (Estimated) Year of Introduction in Vietnam: 1950s
  • 🌟Most Famous Player from Vietnam: Ly Hoang Nam (Vietnamese)
  • 🌍 Estimated Number of Players in Vietnam: 500,000

Tennis in Vietnam has evolved from a niche sport to a widespread recreational activity and competitive discipline. With an emphasis on speed, skill, and finesse, tennis attracts a diverse population of players and fans.

National and regional tournaments, including the Vietnam Open, draw significant attention and showcase local talent. Ly Hoang Nam, Vietnam’s top tennis player, has participated in distinguished international events, inspiring future generations to take up the sport.

With a growing interest in tennis and emerging athletes, the sport is set to maintain its strong presence in Vietnam’s sports ecosystem.


What is the most popular sport in Vietnam?

Soccer, also known as football, is the most popular sport in Vietnam, capturing the hearts of millions and dominating the country’s sports landscape, with a massive fanbase and numerous players.

What is the national sport of Vietnam?

The national sport of Vietnam is soccer (football), as it is deeply entrenched in the country’s culture, with a vast following and a strong connection to the nation’s identity.

What are the most watched sports in Vietnam?

The most watched sports in Vietnam are soccer (football), badminton, table tennis, volleyball, swimming, martial arts, chess, athletics, basketball, cycling, and tennis, each enjoying significant support and popularity in the country.

Max is a sports enthusiast who loves all kinds of ball and water sports. He founded & runs stand-up-paddling.org (#1 German Paddleboarding Blog), played competitive Badminton and Mini Golf (competed on national level in Germany), started learning β€˜real’ Golf and dabbled in dozens of other sports & activities.

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