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America’s Sports Watching Habits

Sports Reports
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7min read
Us Viewing Habits

There’s no question that Americans love to watch sports, but just how much of our time is spent taking in sports-related content? How much does it impact our daily lives? How often do we try the best sport betting apps or live betting sites? We surveyed more than 1,100 Americans across the country to find out.

Sports content graph

How much sports content are Americans watching?

Although baseball is colloquially known as America’s favorite pastime, 35% of people say their favorite sport to watch is football. That’s followed by 15% who like to watch basketball the most, and 10% who prefer baseball. Of course, sports fans love to check out the top sport betting sites in between games. 

The average American says they watch four hours of live sports per week with 40% of respondents saying they watch two to five hours. A smaller majority, 37%, say they watch zero to one hours of live sports every week. 

Even though some games are longer than others, 38% of Americans report watching two to five games per week. It may be no surprise, the majority of people (69%) like to watch live sports more than just the highlights.

When it comes to sports highlights, the average American watches 1.3 hours per week, and the total average time spent watching any sports-related content per week comes to 4.17 hours. 

A graph showing men's vs. women's sports-watching habits

Sports watching habits: Women vs. Men

The survey also found sports-watching habits differ greatly among men and women. The average woman watches 2.6 hours of sports content per week, compared to the average American man who watches 5.8 hours per week. 

When it comes to whom they like watching sports with, the answers are also different. 34% of women say they like watching sports with their significant other, while only 9% of men want to watch with their special someone. Meanwhile, 29% of women like watching sports alone, compared to the 59% of men who prefer watching solo.

More than 1 in 4 men admit to using sports as an excuse to get out of something, compared to only 13% of women. 

Life without sports appears to be harder for men as 55% say they could go more than two weeks without watching sports, compared to 76% of women.

A graph showing how Americans are watching sports

How are Americans watching sports?

For many, there’s nothing like kicking back on the couch and watching a game, and 60% of Americans, like to watch live sports on TV. Meanwhile, 28% prefer to watch through a streaming service. Although you can watch highlights on the internet or even catch them on TV, 16% of people say they will record a game, and watch it at a later time if they’re unable to watch it live. 

As far as company goes, 44% report preferring to watch sports alone, with 21% preferring to watch with a significant other, and just 17% with friends. 

Whether it’s because of the pandemic or just comfort, 83% of Americans like to watch most games at home.

Data percentage on why Americans are watching sports

Why are Americans watching sports?

52% say the biggest reason is for entertainment, and 39% say it’s because they are fans of the team. Of those who say the biggest reason they watch is because they are betting on sports, the average amount gambled on one game is $34. The favorite sports to gamble on? Football and basketball. Although some people like to bet on a variety of factors during a game, 60% say their favorite thing to put money on is the final score. 

A graph outlining some sports-watching facts about Americans

Sports over Everything 

We know that sports are a favorite pastime across the U.S. In fact, 65% of people say they would rather watch sports than the news. Additionally, 42% admit to watching sports while working, and 20% say they’ve used a game as an excuse to get out of another activity like going to dinner or to a birthday party.

As for how much people love sports, 65% say they could go more than two weeks without watching any sports content. That’s followed by 30% who say they could only go one week without sports, and 16% say three days without watching sports-related content would be too long. 


In February 2022, we surveyed 1,115 Americans, 50% male and 50% female from across the United States to ask them about their sports-watching habits. 

For media inquiries, contact [email protected]

Fair Use 

When using this data and research, please attribute by linking to this study and citing

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