A Comprehensive Look at India’s sport Journey from Past to Present

A Comprehensive Look at India's sport Journey from Past to PresentIndia’s sporting chronicles history is a captivating journey interwoven with its rich cultural heritage and dynamic societal evolution. The story is diverse and inspiring, from Kabadi to Cricket and ancient games played in rural settings to modern sports in India that engage global audiences. This blog is all about the India’s sport Journey and its history, culture, heritage and achievements.


The Indian subcontinent is home to the contact sport known as Kabadi. Which is also the most famous and most played sport in India. Kabadi In the north, it is called Panjabi style, which is a bit aggressive, played in a circle court, and in the south, it is called Sanjeevani, played on the square court; it is a game in which two teams compete on opposing sides of the field. Kabadi is connected to tag and wrestling and was played to build physical strength and stamina. It is also said to have been a training exercise for soldiers, preparing them for combat by enhancing their reflexes and agility, at first it was played in the 1920s and later was recognized in the Asian games in 1990,  where India won many gold medals and then Pro Kabaddi league started in 2014 which has transformed Kabaddi by professionalizing the sport and introducing it to a global audience.

Facts: Research has shown that Kabaddi is thought to be over 4,000 years old, with references found in Indian mythology

Kho Kho

Kho Kho is a traditional sport and the oldest outdoor sport in India. It is played between two teams, each consisting of 12 players, and improves speed, agility, strategy, and quick thinking. It is also a powerful weapon for the athlete who accepts the challenge regarding personal growth. The first Kho Kho was held in 1914, and later, the Kho Kho Federation of India organized its first-ever national championship meet in 1959, which featured in the South Asian Games and the Asian Games. 


Hockey holds a remarkable India in sports history, yet hockey has captured countless hearts and played a pivotal role in shaping the nation’s sporting identity. Hockey was developed by the British and later introduced as a popular school game then reached the Indian army in the 1850s, when Britain was still in power. Hockey has gradually become a popular sport of choice among children, teenagers and adults in India, the first hockey club being formed in Calcutta in the year 1855, and then  The Indian Hockey Federation applied and earned a Federation of International Hockey Membership in 1927,  assuring that the Indian hockey team would take part in the 1928 Olympics and won eight gold medals. It is a record till today and dominated the Olympics.


Similar games to baseball, squash, etc., are cricket. It is a contact sport with balls hitting bats played between two teams of eleven players. Cricket’s origins in India have been traced back almost three hundred years to 1721 when the British bought East India Trading Company at its highest. In the early 1990s, India witnessed its initial phase of cricketing dominance, mainly defined as one individual, little master Sachin Tendulkar. Sachin played a vital part in this Indian team’s victories, including maintaining their unbeaten home record against Australia and winning a  Test match against Zimbabwe, Sri Lanka, the West Indies, and England cricket teams. This sport has become so established in the society of India that many may consider it a religion. The Indian cricket team has also won two world cups, one from Kapil Dev in 1983 and another from M.S. Dhoni in 2007.

Football – Soccer

Two teams of eleven players compete in the team sport of soccer, commonly known as football, to get the ball into the goalpost of the other team without using their hands or arms. The team that secures more goals wins.  Football is the most popular ball game in the world for players and spectators. This game was introduced by British soldiers into India in the early 1890s and formed the Indian Football Association, but there were no Indians on the board till 1930. When Jyotish Chandra Guha, an Indian footballer, debuted with Arsenal in the English Football League in 1930, he became the first Indian football player to receive international prominence. Football in India has several phases; some are Gurpreet Singh Sandu, the first Indian football player featured in the UEFA Europa League. Sunil Chhetri has set an international record by surpassing the most number of goals of Lionel Messi. India’s Football team also entered its first FIFA appearance in 2017.


Chess is a strategy board game that can be played by 2 players, and consist of 64 squares arranged in 8*8 grids; these players are referred to as black and white. The history of chess in India is exciting and motivational, from its prehistoric beginnings as Chaturanga to the ascent of contemporary grandmasters. The growth in chess popularity in India over the past couple of decades has been attributed to Viswanathan Anand, a chess grandmaster and five-time world champion following Praggnanandhaa won the World Chess Championship in 2013. With seven points out of a possible fourteen in the 2024 Candidates Tournament, Praggnanandhaa finished fifth out of eight competitors. Furthermore, he emerged victorious against Magnus Carlsen in a match for the first time in the third round of the Norway Chess 2024 competition.

Sports in India are given the most importance. Sports games are included in academics from streets to national and international sports. These are just a few sports which are played apart from these there are many other sports such as 7stones, gully cricket,  hopscotch and many more. Not just for entertainment but also for improving physical and mental health. Do comment if any of the lost games are to be mentioned.  Keep up our culture growing and maintain our heritage. Happy Sporting. Let’s get in touch to discuss such exciting topics at India Unimagined.

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