Best Endurance Sports

The Top TenXW


How is football number 2? You get a break every 8 seconds.

26 miles is long
104 football fields
i admire those people

Marathon should be the sport with the most endurance.
Soccer (football) players stop for about 10 secs for a 'break' every time they sprint... - PeggyPenguin

V1 Comment
2BoxingBoxing is a martial art and combat sport in which two people wearing protective gloves throw punches at each other for a predetermined set of time in a boxing ring..

This is not an endurance sport! I don't know why it's top 3. I know it's hard, but it should be on the top of top 10 muscular strength sports... Not endurance! It's only 3 minutes... Not 3 hours!

You'd be surprised how much wind swinging your arms through the air for 3 minutes actually takes out of you

Clearly the highest stamina sport out of the lot - it will make three minutes feel like hell on earth


I would say Ironman triathlon is definitely the most endurance sport and probably the reason just 0.001% of the population has completed it. It is continuous strength from beginning to end and can take 17 hours to complete. What other sport are you continuously doing for 17 hours straight with no breaks.

Marathon and Swimming are on the top ten, now add cycling, and the result? The MOST demanding endurance sport by far!

How does running a marathon require more endurance than competing in a triathlon when there is running a marathon, plus swimming 2.4 miles and biking 112 miles in an Ironman?

No need to say that it's the most demanding event.

V3 Comments
5SwimmingSwimming is an individual or team sport and activity. Competitive swimming is one of the most popular Olympic sports, with events in freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke, and butterfly.

Track and field above swimming... Really? That's just annoying.
Swimmers train the longest and train at high intensity. The reason these sports are higher than swimming is because unless you are a swimmer you don't know what it takes.

Soccer players you are delusional it is not demanding, you have an off season, you barely train and the training isn't hard. I did soccer and swimming up until I was 12 because by 12 if I wanted to keep up I had to do what the rest of the swimmers were doing at that age and swim 9 sessions a week 2-2and half hours a session and that has just increased since, we train 51 out of 52 weeks of the year everyday morning and night for hours at high intensity and do gym and other training with no rest. You miss a session you get kicked out of the squad, you turn up late you get punished.

Endurance wise no other sports train more.

Most people are afraid of eating too much, we swimmers are afraid of not eating enough. I burn 2 days of the food I ate in only a sixth of my practice. We burn the most calories of all sports. We are glad that the pools we swim in are cold because after a while, your entire body is pretty much giving off steam. The young kids who decide to quit because swim is too hard, they still have no idea. They swam 25's. We swim 500's and more at a time. When people think of swimming, they think of diving to the bottom and coming back up. NO. It is nothing like that. Try to imagine this: You are running an 800. You are holding you breath and can only breath once every 100. You are kicking a 3 pound weight ball as you run. That is equal to a 200 freestyle.

I had a stupid arguement. The person who I was arguing with thought soccer was a more demanding sport than swimming. This person is wrong. You get yelled at for breathing. You have pull water and that is a lot harder than running through air. People are completely wrong when they say swimming is easy and they did it competitively. Well, you did it completely wrong! I tell people to go swim a 100 fly as fast as you can and than tell me what you think. We do more than that, but see what you think after barely a workout for swimmers. A lot of kids try competitive, but they give up young saying it's too hard.

As a runner converted into triathlete, I found new respect into swimmers. Swimming practice is always the toughest workout of the day. I think swimming is a top 3, but triathlon is 100% number 1.

V8 Comments
6SoccerAssociation football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a sport played between two teams of eleven players with a spherical ball.

THIS IS NOT AN ENDURANCE SPORT, 90 minutes is nothing. Cyclists, marathon runners, some swimmers even. They're going at it for hours continually while here some overpaid guys pull 20 short sprints each and jog about for 60 minutes or so, it takes no energy at all compared to other sports. Putting football or soccer on here is just disrespectful to sports that actually need endurance.

Football (soccer) isn't an endurance sport when you compare it to the likes of pro road cycling (read comment in cycling) every top level footballer is using performance enhancing drugs... As they simply aren't fit enough to play as they do and there is so much money involved... It's. Corrupt sport sorry.

You are sprinting for an hour non stop up and down a long field imagine having no subs while also you must quickly think and have good ball skills and coordination so for those of you who say soccers for pansies why don't you give it a try. not to mention all the phsycal contact in soccer

Body, hand, eye coordination and requires very heavy fitness. One 15 minute break during 90 minute games.

V8 Comments

With the standard professional cyclists training for a minimum of 30 hours a week and having cardio vascular systems that are more efficient than any other sport due to their heart rates being high sometimes in the 170bpm for 6+ hours at a time it makes cycling and specifically professional road cycling THE most physically enduring sport there is. When you add in a Tour de France where they will compete on not only a difficult but long course but at incredible speeds 25mph for 2200 miles in 23 days the riders can drop to body fat percentages of lower than 4% and then there's the danger of crashing at speeds of up to 60 mph with little more than a small helmet (only stops your skull from fracturing), it makes it the hardest sport st the top level.

Cycling IS the 2nd endurance sport, I mean soccer (football) you stand for most of it and its boring. In the cycling the PROs ride for sometimes over 6 hrs none stop sprinting, it's VERY HARD and definitely is one of the hardest sports! - PeggyPenguin

Football? Are you kidding me? Really, American football--get out! Australian Rules football maybe but American football--go have a beer. Watch the Tour de France, 20 stages, 3497 km (2012) then see how many more tours these riders take on.

8Water Polo

On top of the fact that swimming is hard enough from lap to lap, you have to continue pass and shot on the move. Water Polo is one of the most enduring sports in which you are constantly on the move. While eggbeating you are swimming lap to lap and passing without any breaks! Can you imagine doing all of that with no stop? To make matters worse water polo is a very rough sport and involves a lot of contact including punching, kicking, and drowning.

Believe it or not,studies have proved that SYMCHRONISED swimming is just as hard as water polo, but requires your strength in different ways. A water polo player needs violence (sort of) but a synchronised swimmer needs to use all their strength and look like it's easy and graceful meanwhile.

9TennisTennis is a racket sport that can be played individually against a single opponent or between two teams of two players each.

You can be on that court for 2-3 hours, with barely any break. That pretty tough.

10FootballAmerican football is a sport played by two teams of eleven players on a rectangular field with goalposts at each end.

The Contenders


This is incredibly underrated. Really I mean soccer, for endurance? And.. volleyball I mean come on guys. I have played almost every sport out there; soccer, LAX, I am also a long distance runner (this belongs on this list), and I can promise you this belongs in the top three. Have you ever anticipated something (like a 2k) with such fear that you wished that you would break a leg that day, only so that you didn't have to do it. Or you wished that you would pass out in a piece so that the pain would stop. Tell me oh soccer players, when is the last time that about 1/2 your team mates were crying in anticipation of a test. When is the last time you looked at a TEAM MATE and thought "i will do ANYTHING to get her spot." This being said I recognize that soccer IS hard, just not in the same mental endurance way that crew is. If there was a what sports require that most coordination, then soccer would win.

Most importantly though crew is addicting. The mental endurance it has given ...more

Nope... Have any of you ever felt like throwing up and kept pushing yourself until you did... Never stopping... And continuing on afterward... Rowing is pure hell of a sport but its addicting so there's no quitting. 5Ks are the worst... In the blistering heat... Your whole body aches... You feel like quitting but you have to much pride to let the rest of your boat down and your team... So you continue on and push yourself harder

I personally have rowed until my hands bled from blisters, thrown up while on a rowing machine (erg), but although it sounds all bad... I wouldn't trade it for the world... Because rowers have the BEST teammates!

Rowing a 2k has been scientifically proven to be as hard as playing to back to back basketball games.

Rowing is all endurance.

V2 Comments
12BasketballBasketball is a sport played by two teams of five players on a rectangular court. The objective is to shoot a ball through a hoop 18 inches in diameter and 10 feet high mounted to a backboard at each end.

you need to run 48 minutes against the greatest atheletes who got 40 inch vertical leap and are 6 foot 7 on average

Every played basket ball it hard work and its tiring


Field hockey is the most revolutionary sport in terms of speed and intensity. Rules are changed frequently just to speed the game up! Professional teams require around 22 on a yoyo test. Much higher than most other sports.

14LacrosseLacrosse is a contact team sport played between two teams using a small rubber ball and a long-handled stick called a crosse or lacrosse stick.

Should be #1. You are moving your body every second controlling that bike. If you are joy riding no. But if you're a profesional it's the toughest endurance race. 30+ minutes without a break. Can't slow down either cause you will get passed by someone who has better endurance. They are literally going 100% for 30+ minutes. Go watch a profesional motocross race and see what I mean.

You are always working your bike, good workout for the upper body.

Try holding onto something that just wants to kill you for 30+ mins while everyone around you is trying to do the same. Not to mention the crazy terrain you're travelling over at break neck speeds!
This sport is extremely difficult and not everyone can do it like soccer, NFL or swimming!

Have you every rode motocross

V2 Comments
16VolleyballVolleyball is a team sport in which two teams of six players are separated by a net. Each team tries to score points by grounding a ball on the other team's court under organized rules.
17Cross Country Skiing

Cross country skiing has been proven a number of times to be THE MOST phisically and mentally challenging sport, your upper and lower body are working constantly, non stop

50km races in 1hr:40min at -20 and no bench breaks!... This is extremely demanding phisically and mentally I don't see why boxing is before cross country skiing!

Cross country skiing has been proven a number of times to be the most cardio demanding sport their is.. Absolutely no unfit athletes, rock hard abs and training every day of the week not to mention racing at -20, sometimes for as long as 50km and the best in the world can do this in 1hr:30 and yes, that's 50km!

V1 Comment
18WrestlingWrestling is a combat sport involving grappling type techniques such as clinch fighting, throws and takedowns, joint locks, pins and other grappling holds.

Go and ask one of your buddies to wrestle for two minutes. Then see how winded you are afterward. Then, imagine doing that against someone who's better than you and won't quit til the whistle blows. Toughest sport I've ever done.

It is the overall most difficult contact sport because of all of the skill and strength you have to have. And even though a match is only 4 minutes and 30 seconds long it's still the longest time of your life.

I honestly think 30 seconds in wrestling can be more difficult than any other sport.

1 minute wrestling is truly much harder then any other sport on here

19Cross Country Running

This sport is by far more physically and mentally demanding than most sports above it. I am sure that if told anyone not running cross country to go run the 3-5 mi they would refuse and if they did try they would not make it the whole way without walking. Also xc is one of the most mentally demanding sports there is.

I do agree that this is hard but I mean 2 WORKOUTS A WEEK! Train harder if you want to succeed... no harsh feelings - PeggyPenguin

Case A: our sport is your sports punishment
Case B: it's all about endurance
Case C: run 70+ miles per week without an off season and come back and complain about your sport is harder. These are quality miles, not just a 15 minute jogging pace. I think that marathoners do deserve number 1, but this should be second. We do all the ab and arm conditioning as other sports, in addition to one or two running workouts a week.

BAdd New Item

Related Lists

Most Dangerous Sports Top Ten Hardest Sports Top Ten Greatest Sports Top 10 Sports Shoe Brands Best Sports Animes

List StatsUpdated 31 May 2016

400 votes
29 listings
8 years, 101 days old

Top Remixes

1. Boxing
2. Marathon
3. Triathlon



Add Post

Error Reporting

See a factual error in these listings? Report it here.