Sports are of major importance to the people of Belize. Belize has not been a major competitor in the international arena but the athletes are very serious about training to be the best. The Olympic Committee supervises the country's participation in the Olympic Games while the Belize Sports Council oversees sporting competition in the country.
Soccer is very popular in Belize as it is in the majority of Central and South America. In fact, you will see the Belizeans playing soccer every opportunity they get. And they don't need a green soccer field on every occasion either. Some play soccer on the white sand beaches. If you have never been in the stands of a Central American soccer match, you are in for a real surprise. There is no comparison to the degree people get into the matches here and how people get into an American football game. Belizeans take their soccer very serious and really participate in the cheering and other sideline activities of a match.
Surprisingly, softball is a very popular sport here. The people of the Belize and Cayo Districts seem to have the most enthusiasm for softball. There are local and national tournaments with a champion getting crowned at the very end of the season. Female softball teams have been tough competitors within the Caribbean and Central America. More and more, men's softball teams are getting just as competitive.
Probably the second most popular sport in Belize is basketball. The Belize Basketball Association or BBA is the one national governing organization for the sport. The leagues in basketball go up to the semi-professional level. You will find neighborhoods with at least one basketball court if not more as the kids begin their interest in the sport at an early age. Belize has yet to be in Olympic competition in the sport of basketball.
Other sports popular in Belize are canoeing, cycling, tennis, and cricket. Cricket obviously is played here because of the British influence for so many years.