#1 Best Guide To Latvian Sports Vocabulary

Are you still struggling to find relevant content to learn and speak Latvian? Then let this blog be your guide. No matter where you go, nothing can beat the entertainment that sports (also called sportas in Latvian) can provide. Thus, to increase and enhance your Latvian vocabulary and communication skills, it is necessary to go through essential Latvian sports vocabulary. In fact, knowing this topic can certainly elevate your language exchange experience with the locals as this is one of the topics they are genuinely interested in. Ready to learn more? Let’s dive right into it!

The Latvian Sports Culture

Before we start with the Latvian vocabulary, I suggest a small overview of the Latvian sports culture so that we have a basic idea of local’s perspectives on this topic. This is especially helpful for people who plan to visit Latvia.

The sports arena in Latvia includes all the popular and beloved activities and games such as hockey, basketball, athletics, football, and even rugby and cycling. However, hockey or Ice hockey is the national sport of Latvia. Thanks to the support of the government and private companies, hundreds of athletes and talented players are trained and developed in the country every year just for hockey alone. Basically, Latvians have always shown a sign of pride towards their hockey players.

Apart from hockey, the population of Latvia has immense love for football. One can say football is also one of the most popular sports in Latvia. In fact, almost all public schools and institutions have football coaching centers for students and talented players to nurture them from a very young age. Perhaps, cultivating a love for sports has always been deeply embedded in the Latvian culture. There is no surprise why their athletes are truly world-class! In fact, the Latvian National Football team reached the finals of the European Championships in 2002! Interesting, right? 

So if you genuinely want to connect with the locals, learning sports-related words will undoubtedly come in handy. We guarantee that this is one of the best topics to talk about casually with the locals as this can help you get on their good side immediately. What may also help is if you know some of their top teams in various sporting events. 

Latvian Sports Vocabulary

Latvian sports vocabulary

In this section, we will learn some common Latvian vocabulary concerning sports along with attached Latvian facts. Later on, we will get further into different words and phrases that will come in handy for you and help you speak Latvian better. Let’s get started.

  1. Hokejs (Hockey)

Hockey or ice hockey in Latvian is known as Hokejs. Ice hockey is one of the most played and watched sports in Latvia and the national sport. There exists a professional league established in 1931 and a national team that has participated in numerous championships bringing home the opportunity of the Winter Olympic Games.

Since the beginning, Dinamo Riga has been very popular and is perceived as a strong hockey team. It was one of the 12 professional teams participating in the first Soviet Championship. They are always known to protect and preserve the culture of Latvian Sports.

  1. Futbols (Football)

When it comes to other participative sports, football is also one of the most anticipated sporting events in the country. In fact, Latvia also has its own Latvian Cup, which is officially governed by the Latvijas Futbola federācija. To this date, Latvian teams have won more than ten times in international football championships, which goes to show that their athletes are really that good too. 

  1. Basketbols (Basketball)

Basketbols will always be a core sport in many countries. In the case of Latvia, this has quickly become one of the most popular sporting events too. Latvia counts as one of the eight members who founded the International Basketball Federation (FIBA). To add to its pride, the Latvian National team won the first FIBA Championship. 

Star players like Uljana Semjonova, Olympic champion, make the locals even more inclined towards the sport, allowing agreement and engagement on developing new and fresh players every year. Many laws of the government ensure proper services to such active players.

  1. Vieglatlētika (Athlectics)

Apart from football and basketball, Athletics, especially javelin throw and track, have a lot of participants. Many Olympic players are there in Latvia from the athletics arena and record-holders like Madara Palameika. Players also exercise rigorously, and in many cases, the Latvian Athletic Association support these players and reports on their growth and development.

  1. Volejbols (Volleyball)

Volleyball is also quite popular in Latvia. When it comes to Volejbols, summer volleyball is the most commonly played. Although Latvia experiences less time with summer, many players have excelled in this sport and gained access to Olympic-level competitions. The excellent participation of Latvian players in different sports and activities shows that Latvia is truly a wonderful country filled with active souls.

  1. Regbijs (Rugby)

Rugby in Latvian is known as Regbijs. Almost 600 registered rugby players are serviced by the Latvian Rugby Federation. Rugby in Latvia started around the mid-20th century, and many players have come up forming the Latvia national rugby team. The team has played in many rugby union games and won numerous awards. According to the latest reports, rugby is slowly becoming the way of life for Latvian youths, which is why many are becoming more interested in becoming official players of this sport. 

  1. Braukšana ar kajaku (Kayaking)

The Gauja River is the most known river for kayaking and other sporting events such as canoeing and boating. Pāvilosta is the mainland or capital of water sports in Latvia, so be sure to check it out during your travel. And for more inquiries, you can simply send a message to credible outdoor activities agencies in Latvia to get proper instructions and permissions before you plan to go kayaking anywhere within the country.

  1. Šahs (Chess)

Quite different from the normal course of play like football or hockey, chess is considered by the locals as a game for the geniuses. Many famous chess players (mainly attackers) came from Latvia, which shows that the locals seem to love playing this as much as they can. The country even has its own set of prestigious chess schools for all ages and levels. 

Essential Latvian Vocabulary You Need To Know

Now that we know the facts and words for common sports in Latvia, let us move forward and learn some additional vocabulary and phrases that will help us talk more about sports in the Latvian language. 

English Words Latvian Translations

Loka šaušana


















Tautas bumba










Short put

Lodes grūšana





Weight lifting





Basic Latvian Phrases Related To Sports

Latvian phrases for sports

English Phrases Latvian Translations
I love playing basketball

Man patīk spēlēt basketbolu

He is a football player

Viņš ir futbolists

Do you swim?

Vai tu peldi?

Cycling is fun

Riteņbraukšana ir jautra

Ice hockey is the national sport of Latvia

Hokejs ir Latvijas nacionālais sporta veids

She wants to do gymnastics

Viņa vēlas nodarboties ar vingrošanu

My father is a chess player

Mans tēvs ir šahists

My sister went to Olympics for archery

Mana māsa devās uz olimpiskajām spēlēm loka šaušanā

Ready To Learn Latvian?

After realizing the vast enthusiasm of Latvians towards sports, it has become quite clear why we need to learn some of these important sports vocabularies to improve our language skills. Learning words like Šahs, Regbijs, and Volejbols will only make our speaking and conversing skills a lot better. And in the case of tourists, what can be a better way of starting a conversation with a local than stating some facts about the sports culture in the native language? It makes your personality shine and enables you to connect more with the locals. As we talk about conversing, have you tried the Ling App yet?

Learn With Ling App

Learn Languages Ling App

Ling App is a language learning app that covers over 60 languages you can learn by just downloading the app for free. It has unique features like an AI chatbot that will improve your communication skills and help you memorize your vocab quickly. And if you want to explore more such blog posts regarding the grammarvocab, culture, or even the colors in Latvian, you can do so in the blog section of the Ling App website

The help team of team Ling is also very supportive and active, ever ready to help with your needs. Thus, if you want to learn more about the Latvian language and get the best support, download Ling App immediately and start learning Latvian today!

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