BBC: “Why Is India So Bad at Sport?”

Steve Sailer writes: “…Indians are enamored of some aspects of their British colonial heritage, such as P.G. Wodehouse comic novels, but not Britain’s sporting tradition. In the past, you’d see a few rich Indian sportsmen, like Vijay Amritraj, who was one of the world’s better tennis players in the early 1970s, or diaspora Indians like golfer Vijay Singh, who briefly deposed Tiger Woods as the world’s #1 golfer in 2004.”

“Sports are more or less pretend war, and India is the probably the least warlike place on earth.

It would be interesting to explore whether India’s lack of enthusiasm for violence helps explain its problems banging up against the Malthusian ceiling.”


* South Asians (Indians, Paks, Banglas) do very poorly in sports in the UK too.

For example, “football” (soccer) is the most popular sport in the UK. Yet there are hardly any professional soccer players of South Asian descent in the UK.

* Make cricket an olympic sport and they will at least make an effort.

* Here’s a study done on a multiethnic group of college students in Texas.

Of all races, Indians had the highest fat % and lowest lean mass. Athletes need to have low fat % and high lean mass.

* Here’s a study that measured aerobic fitness among British children.

The study found that Indians, Paks, and Banglas had a lower mean (less aerobically fit) than White youths. Blacks had a higher mean (more aerobically fit).

* ‘Valuing education’ doesn’t seem to stop the East Asians or middle-class whites from high achievement in sports.

Other commenters have already mentioned the two most important factors:

1. The only sport they care about is cricket (although given their population they still underperform in that. Ps I’m Australian).

2. Indians have the least fast-twitch muscle fibre of any ethnic group. Anyone who has spent time around them would not doubt this for a second.

* You’d think though that with almost a billion people-just by accident something might happen…

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been covered in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and on 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
This entry was posted in India. Bookmark the permalink.