DID YOU KNOW?
Did you know 85 percent of junior high students in Japan are likely to be part of a school sports club? In high school, the number ranges between 70 to 75 percent. For the North American school culture, joining a sports team isn’t as emphatic as in Japanese schools. This explains why Japanese anime is so familiar with this theme. For a good portion of the sports genre in anime, they tend to take place in either junior or senior high school. Examples of these are Ace wo Nerae and Prince of Tennis (tennis anime), Slam Dunk and Kuroko’s Basketball (basketball anime) and Captain Tsubasa, Days and Inazuma Eleven (soccer anime), to name a few. Japanese audiences tend to relate to these anime themes more than Western audiences. The explanation is quite simple. Japanese education encourages students more to join a sports team as compared to American schools. This genre of anime has produced some of the best sports anime.
One of the earliest sports anime in Japan originated in 1968. It is the wrestling anime "Tiger Mask". It is about a professional wrestler who wears a tiger mask, which began as a manga. It ran for 14 volumes from 1968 to 1971 and was popular enough to be remembered by some people to this day. Definitely, sports anime have been a part of the anime culture. This is true not only for Japanese audiences but for every anime fan as well. There are various resources for downloading anime and apps to watch anime available. Fans can find the best anime of the sports genre and enjoy it.