Sports fans are in the American majority, so it may be difficult to find a love interest who isn’t heavily invested in football, baseball, basketball or hockey. In fact, 59 percent of Americans identify as a sports fan, and 66 percent of them are men. Interestingly, studies show that higher income earners are also more likely to enjoy watching sports.
Regardless of the reason or their gender, this means that most of the people you date will want to at least occasionally watch or attend a sporting event. The good news is that sports fans actually have many positive character traits that can make them the ideal partner.
1. They’re Loyal
Sports fans tend to loyally follow the same team, year in and year out, regardless of how often they win. For example, the Detroit Lions have almost 1.9 million fans on Facebook, even though they have never made it to the Super Bowl and haven’t won any type of championship since 1957.
To further emphasize the point, the Lions even managed to lose every single game they played during the 2008 season, and yet their fans continue to show them loyalty.
Psychologists believe that loyalty is one of the most important traits for a healthy, long-lasting relationship. It has also been stated that loyalty is one of the biggest factors for relationship and personal happiness.
2. They’re Sentimental
Sports fans often have at least one favorite memory from a game they watched. They also tend to get choked up during big moments in sports movies such as “Field of Dreams.” Even the bad moments are remembered and widely discussed for many years. This trait was referenced in an episode of “How I Met Your Mother” that depicted a bar full of Minnesota Vikings fans talking about the heartbreak of losing the 1999 NFC Championship game.
This sentimentality is an endearing trait that may spill over into other areas of their life. Additionally, it makes it really easy to choose a gift for them. After all, it’s common for sports enthusiasts to enjoy decorating with photos of their favorite sports moments.
3. They’re Passionate
If you’ve never been to a baseball game that had a tied score in the bottom of the ninth inning, you may not have ever experienced true passion. Sports lovers will stand on their feet, clap their hands and yell for all they’re worth in every type of weather condition, including rain and snowstorms that would send most people running for shelter.
Every year there are even guys who remain shirtless in the freezing cold in an attempt to show how passionate and dedicated they are. Therefore, if you want to date someone who clearly understands passion, a sports fan may be your best bet.
4. They’re Forgiving
The only way to keep rooting for a team through thick and thin is to develop an extremely forgiving attitude. This may not always seem to be the case, but take a close look at what happens when a player signs with a new team. He or she may have been considered the enemy yesterday, but before the contract ink even dries, they will be forgiven for their past transgressions and welcomed warmly by fans.
Forgiveness is considered to be the secret of a happy marriage. When you combine forgiveness with loyalty, you’re much more likely to get through the tough times together. Studies have even discovered that forgiveness can help you live longer.
5. They’re Enthusiastic
Do you want to come home to someone who is excited to see you every day? Sports fans are able to sustain their enthusiasm on a specific topic, team or person for an extended period of time. Instead of things becoming mundane to them, they’re able to showcase their enthusiasm on a regular basis.
This quality can help keep a relationship from becoming boring, and it also provides a nice self-esteem boost to the person on the receiving end of their enthusiastic behavior.
6. They Can Handle Disappointment
Sports fans are inevitably disappointed several times throughout each season. For example, a baseball team only needs to win half of its game in order to be considered successful. Sitting through a disappointing game is no fun, but sports fans are able to bounce back and regain their enthusiasm by the next day.
From a young age, we all have the opportunity to either learn from disappointment or to let it crush us. From a psychological standpoint, it’s much better to learn how to quickly move forward from disappointments. This quality also helps people forgive their partners more easily.
7. They’re Typically Happier than Non-Fans
Believe it or not, several studies have proven that sports fans are usually happier and live a longer life than people who don’t follow any teams. This is linked to a sense of community that is found with other fans and with the team itself.
Happiness in other aspects of life is virtually certain to make it easier for these individuals to sustain a happy relationship, which makes them a great choice for dating and marriage.
8. They Have Higher Self-Esteem
Low self-esteem can put a serious strain on any relationship, especially if the individual in question constantly bashes themselves in front of their partner.
Sports fans, on the other hand, tend to have higher levels of self-esteem than people who have no interest in games that involve a ball or a puck. This positive benefit is another reason that people who follow at least one sport are usually happier than others. As a result, they will be more confident in their relationships.
9. They Understand the Need for Personal Hobbies
Sports fans may have a built-in community of people who love the same team, but they’re also well aware that some people have a lot of disdain for their viewing habits. Therefore, they’re able to see things from a different perspective when their partners are interested in a hobby that they don’t like. When you’re with a sports fan, you can expect your personal hobbies to be respected, as long as you don’t root for an opposing team.
Even if you have zero interest in watching sports, you now have a better understanding of the personality traits that are commonly exhibited by sports lovers. There has also been a lot of intriguing research about sports psychology and how applying it to your life can make you more successful.
Featured photo credit: Keith Allison via flic.kr