Monday 10 December 2018

It’s official: These are the sports the public find most boring to watch

Research from YouGov has the answers, and some of them may surprise you.

Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy
Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy

By Max McLean, Press Association

While sport is deemed a leisurely actively, and something many people consume as spectators for pleasure, most are, to some extent, an acquired taste.

In fact, research from YouGov investigating which sports Brits find exciting and boring suggests that no sport is adored nationwide.

A total of 1,616 British adults were presented with 17 sports, and asked whether they found them very/quite boring, neither boring nor exciting, very/quite exciting, or didn’t know. The results are certainly illuminating.

Most boring

Golf GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Golf runs away with the award for the sport the nation finds most boring, with 70% of people deeming the pursuit very or quite boring.

The hobby also racked up just 11% in the very or quite exciting category, the lowest of the 17 sports.

American football was ranked the second most boring sport, closely followed by cricket, while Formula One was perhaps surprisingly only the ninth most boring sport. Perhaps that figure might be lower without the success of four-time world champion, Lewis Hamilton.

Most exciting

Mo Farah Running GIF by Nike - Find & Share on GIPHY

At the other end of the scale, the most exciting sport might surprise you. Not football, tennis or boxing, but athletics.

Just 28% of people rated athletics as boring, while a whopping 47% said it was exciting, beating football by 4% in that category.

Tennis placed joint second with football on 43% for excitement, while football clearly polarised participants, scoring 40% for boring too.

Neither here nor there

Swimming GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Passivity perhaps indicates a different type of boredom, and as such the “neither boring nor exciting” category YouGov offered tells its own story.

Swimming for example came 12th in the boring category, but rated top for neither boring nor exciting at 29%, while gymnastics followed closely behind with 27%.

Meanwhile, football ranked lowest in the category, with just 14% of people describing the beautiful game as neither boring nor exciting. Hated, adored, but never ignored.

The ‘pub’ sports

Break Deal GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

The battle between darts and snooker produced a fun statistical quirk, with darts rated both more boring and more exciting than its cue-sport counterpart.

Yes, leading snooker 58-57 in the boring stakes, and 19-18 in the excitement category, darts received a marginally less passive response than snooker.

The battle rages on.

Press Association

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