The Most Expensive Sports in The World

While there are many affordable sports that you can practice without a lot of equipment, there are also other sports that require large amounts of money. F1 racing, polo, and the very little known bobsleigh, are just some examples.
The Most Expensive Sports in The World

Last update: 14 October, 2019

There are a ton of sports that people practice all around the world. Some of them are very popular while others not so much. But have you thought about which are the most expensive sports that you can practice? Find out in this article!

Many people practice sports simply as a hobby. For others, sports are more of a lifestyle and even a job. No matter what your case is, sports have a positive impact on your physical, mental and social development.

Some sports don’t require a big investment to learn and practice them. But, on the other side of the spectrum, there are many different sports that require big sums of money if you want to participate in them.

This means that in order to practice certain sports, you may need to be in a somewhat privileged financial position. That’s the only possible way to afford the equipment, classes, competitions and garments that you’ll need.

The most expensive sports in the world

1. Formula 1

Formula 1 is an elite sport with prestigious racing drivers from many different nationalities. At the same time, Formula 1 has an impressive automotive development with brands such as Mercedes, Renault, Ferrari, and Honda, among others.

To become a Formula 1 competitor, you must buy a single-seater racing car. Even if you only rent the car, it entails a very high cash expenditure. You also have to be willing to pay for tires, since they’re a lot more expensive than regular car tires.

A single-seater racing car for Formula 1

On the other hand, it’s essential to get sponsors, since entering a single competition can cost a considerable amount of money. It’s also a very risky sport that can cause many injuries, which also means you’ll have to spend a lot of money on medical bills.

2. Polo

Polo is a very well-known sport all around the world. The participants play while riding horses as a team. In plain sight, it doesn’t seem such an expensive sport, considering that it usually takes place in small areas and with small teams.

However, the most important cost that this sport entails is the three to four extra horses needed as a backup, since the animal can get tired or suffer an injury. Another associated cost is the horse’s training and maintenance.

Two men playing polo, one of the most expensive sports in the world

Competitive polo is mostly sponsored by large companies due to the high expenses and associated costs. Even though it’s not an Olympic sport, it’s played professionally in 16 different countries.

3. Sailing

Sailing requires very good abilities and experience. This discipline has been a part of Olympic sports for a long time now. It’s been played since the very first Olympic Games in Athens, back in 1896.

Nowadays, there’s a wide variety of sophisticated sport boats. Since the boats are the main requirement to practice this sport, the cost of sailing is very high.

Sailing as a sport only happens during a specific season of the year. The rest of the year, people store their boats in a dry place. They take them out again when the next sailing season begins.

Competitive sailing is one of the most expensive sports in the world

4. Bobsleigh, one of the most expensive sports for winter

Bobsleigh originated in the Winter Olympic Games. This game is similar to racing sports from Formula 1. Bobsleigh requires two to four teammates to participate. The bobsleigh sled is similar to ice or snow sleighs, which are more common in northern countries.

This is an exclusive winter sport. It was invented in the late 1860s by the Swiss. In this discipline, the athletes do time-trial group races in a sleigh that’s dragged down by gravity.

Bobsleigh requires a lot of money because building and maintaining the sleighs is necessary and expensive. It’s also essential to get sponsors if you want to be a part of the sports organizations involved with this discipline.

A bobsleigh during the 2014 Winter Olympic Games

5. BASE jumping

BASE jumping is one of the most expensive, extreme and risky sports. It’s about jumping from very high points using a very similar suit to the one used in parachuting. The word BASE stands for Building, Antenna, Span and Earth.

BASE jumping requires a lot of practice to do it safely and competitively. It’s one of the most dangerous and adventurous sports in the world. Generally, a winged suit isn’t too expensive. The cost mostly comes from renting a plane, special training, insurance, and the pilot’s wages.

The most expensive sports in the world are not easily accessible since you require large sums of money to practice them. However, there are always lots of alternatives or ways to enjoy them. The important thing is to not lose your passion and love for sports.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Müller, M. (2014). After Sochi 2014: Costs and impacts of Russias Olympic Games. Eurasian Geography and Economics55(6), 628–655.
  • (2013). “Formula 1.” IIC – International Review of Intellectual Property and Competition Law44(5), 611–611.
  • Britannica Online Encyclopedia. Bobsledding.   “bobsledding (sport) – Britannica Online Encyclopedia“. Retrieved 2014-02-21.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.