A Favorite Sport in Mexico

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Updated: Aug 15, 2023
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Sports are a huge part of American culture, but the same can be said about Mexican culture. These sports have helped shape the country and its culture. They have evolved from being played with a large rubber ball to using balls of various shapes and sizes, and sometimes no ball at all.

The oldest sport believed to be played in Mexico is the “Mesoamerican ballgame”. This game was played in many parts of Central America during the precolonial ages. Given the antiquity of this game, the rules are not completely known, but researchers suggest that it resembled racquetball.

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“The ball was solid rubber and heavy, and archaeologists believe that players used their hips to keep it in the air” (Carey, 2018). Archaeological evidence suggests that this Mesoamerican ballgame was also used in ritual sacrifice, implying the losing team had no opportunity for a rematch. The game’s popularity spread across most Mesoamerican cultures. I personally have never played racquetball, but I am aware that it remains a favored game in America.

Another significant sport that helped form Mexican culture is bullfighting. Bullfighting is banned in much of the world, including eight countries, among which Mexico is an exception due to perceived animal cruelty. This sport was originally brought to Mexico by the Spanish conquistadors over 500 years ago. “Mexico holds the most significant bullfighting events and is home to some of the world’s top toreros (bullfighters)” (Carey, 2018). A bullfight consists of three stages, each more intense than the last. I have never watched bullfighting and am aware it is not for the faint-hearted. The fight ends when the torero stabs the bull between its shoulder blades, killing it. Given its violent nature, bullfighting is a topic of ongoing controversy and debate.

The most popular Mexican sport is soccer, being the favorite game to both watch and play. Soccer’s introduction to Mexico is credited to the British, who also founded the Orizaba Athletic Club in 1898. Although the club originally focused on cricket, a soccer division was added three years later. The national soccer competition was launched a year thereafter. “Soccer is played everywhere but is particularly popular in Mexico’s central and northern regions, with teams from Mexico City, Guadalajara, Pachuca, and Monterrey being some of the most famous” (Cray, 2018). It’s unclear if soccer is a significant part of Elizabeth’s life from what is mentioned in the book, but given its popularity in Mexico, it likely was. Soccer is less popular in America compared to football, but within the Mexican community, soccer remains the preferred game.

Another popular sport in Mexico is baseball. Its popularity is growing faster and faster. Many players from Mexico and many areas of Latin America have gone to play for the MLB. The sport of baseball is more popular in Cuba and Latin America than it is in Mexico, but it is still very popular. Mexico has two leagues of baseball: the northern and the southern league. They have a schedule that is quite similar to the one in the United States’ MLB. “Mexican baseball is slightly more popular on the border with the United States and in the country’s port cities because it was brought to those areas of the country first by US soldiers stationed in Mexico” (Carey, 2018). Because baseball is not as popular as soccer, it is not enough of a money-making sport to bring in lots of cash flow and revenue. Subsequently, the baseball stadiums are not that nice and are medium-sized. Also, not all of them are broadcasted on television. I grew up watching a lot of baseball. I did not know that this sport was not always popular in Mexico, but I am happy to hear that it is growing in popularity compared to what it used to be. I find it fascinating that a sport from the United States was brought to another country for them to play.

The last sport I am going to talk about is boxing. “While most people would assume soccer is Mexico’s biggest sport, they might be surprised to learn that boxing has gained the country the most achievements on the world stage” (Carey, 2018). Mexico has 204 world champions, which is more than any single country. In the 19th century when boxing was a sport for amateurs, it was called “a game for children”. It was thought to be only for thieves and drunk people because in Tampico sailors used to fight each other for drinking money, using napkins around the hands instead of using the gloves that are now used today. In the 1930’s, boxing had its first Golden Age in Mexico and made its way to the United States through immigrants who left Mexico. “Fourteen Mexican boxers have been inducted into the Boxing Hall of Fame and there are 12 medal-winning Olympic fighters in the history of the sport in Mexico” (Carey, 2018). I am not a big boxing fan, but I do know that it has become very popular throughout the ages and is not just a sport for thieves and the drunks. I think it is very cool that it was brought to the US by Mexico.

I consider sports a big part of my life. I grew up playing many different sports and continued to do that throughout high school. I also consider sports a big part of my life because they have led me to be introduced to many of the friends that I have. These friendships would not have been made if I did not play sports. I believe that sports can bring people closer to becoming friends, as well as bringing families closer. They can all watch big games together on television or play them with each other, creating family bonding. No matter what the culture or country is, sports are very important in life.

The most popular sports in Mexico are not the same as they are in the United States. What really fascinated me was that we share some of the same sports. For example, baseball and boxing. We introduced baseball to Mexican culture, and Mexican culture brought boxing to us. It’s awe-inspiring to know that sports are very important here, and how they have evolved over time.

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A favorite sport in Mexico. (2022, Nov 09). Retrieved from https://papersowl.com/examples/a-favorite-sport-in-mexico/