Are Card Games Considered a Sport?

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By Valerie Becker

Card games have been around for centuries, and their popularity has only grown with time. From classics like poker and bridge to modern favorites like Magic: The Gathering and Hearthstone, card games have become a staple in the entertainment industry. But do they qualify as a sport?

The answer to this question is not straightforward. Some people argue that card games require skill, strategy, and mental agility, just like traditional sports. Others believe that sports must involve physical exertion and competition against other players.

Let’s take a closer look at both sides of the argument.

Why Card Games Are Considered a Sport

Those who consider card games a sport point out that these games require players to use their minds in much the same way athletes use their bodies. To be successful at card games such as poker or bridge, players must possess strategic thinking abilities, quick decision-making skills, and the ability to read their opponents.

Additionally, many card games involve tournaments with prize money or other rewards for the winners. These competitions can be highly competitive and attract skilled players from all over the world.

Some card game enthusiasts also argue that playing cards can improve hand-eye coordination and concentration. They contend that these skills are similar to those required in traditional sports such as basketball or tennis.

Why Card Games Are Not Considered a Sport

On the other hand, opponents of the idea that card games are a sport argue that they lack physicality. Unlike traditional sports such as football or basketball, which require physical exertion and athleticism, most card games can be played while sitting down at a table.

Critics also point out that many card game tournaments are held in hotel ballrooms or convention centers rather than on fields or courts. This further emphasizes the difference between sports and card games.

Finally, some people believe that defining card games as a sport diminishes what it means to be an athlete. They argue that athletes train for years to achieve peak physical condition, while card game players do not have to worry about things like diet, exercise, or injuries.


In the end, whether or not card games are considered a sport is a matter of opinion. While some people believe that they require the same level of skill and strategy as traditional sports, others argue that they lack the physicality and athleticism necessary to be considered a sport.

Regardless of where you fall on this debate, there is no denying that card games are a popular pastime enjoyed by millions of people around the world. Whether you play for fun or compete in high-stakes tournaments, there is always something new to learn and enjoy in the world of card games.