Best Sports Books – Books to Inspire and Help in Becoming a Better Athlete
There certainly isn’t a shortage of the best sports books; every year, there are new athletes that are pushing the boundaries further and further.
You can easily find biographical novels about the most renowned athletes, such as Andre Agassi’s Open, or you can find informational reads.
Whether you’re a fan of sports or are only interested in learning more about them, there are plenty of books for you to stick your nose into.
If you’re someone who loves a specific sport or athlete and is searching for autobiographies, you are bound to be brought into a world you never knew of before. These novels will give you a better understanding of the trials and tribulations of performing at your peak ability every week. You’ll also be able to know more about the personal life of your favorite athlete, as they typically discuss their personal challenges just as much as their professional ones.
For readers who are more interested in statistics and the mathematics behind sports, you’ll be glad to know there’s plenty for you to take advantage of, as well. From understanding how math can be useful for picking baseball teams to gathering a better idea of what a player’s statistics can mean for a group, there’s a lot of knowledge to pick up.
In the best sports books, you’re less likely to know the personal details of an athlete, but more of how they are looked at as assets and whether they would be suitable for a team or not.
Of course, there is an assortment of historical sports books, as well, which are our favorites. These novels tell the tales of past athletes as well as their teams, not to mention you’ll also learn about where sports came from and how they became what they are today. With a more in-depth analysis of fan culture, how outcomes have been influenced in the past, and what it means to be an avid sports lover, you’ll have a deeper appreciation for the industry.
All of the best sports books are available for anyone to read, and if you’ve ever caught a Sunday night football game, we highly recommend you check out these titles.
Best Sports Books
Body by Science: A Research Based Program for Strength Training, Body building, and Complete Fitness in 12 Minutes a Week
Training Essentials for Ultrarunning: How to Train Smarter, Race Faster, and Maximize Your Ultramarathon Performance
I don’t read “business books”. I may read books which were classified as “Business”, “Leadership”, etc; but, if I do, I do so in spite of the category they’ve been deemed to belong to, not because of it.
I generally split books into three main categories. Here are the titles –sorry, but I simply can’t pick just one– that currently hold the top spots in each:
Biography/Memoir: Andre Agassi’s and J. R. Moehringer’s “Open“; Elizabeth Gilbert’s “Eat, Pray, Love“; and Salman Rushdie’s “Joseph Anton“.
Good Calories, Bad Calories: Challenging the Conventional Wisdom on Diet, Weight Control, and Disease
Gary Taubes is a true empiricist. I can't believe people hold on to the Platonicity of the thermodynamic theory of diet (calorie in = calorie out). Read it twice, once for the diet, once a a rich document in the history of science.
Master Your Metabolism: The 3 Diet Secrets to Naturally Balancing Your Hormones for a Hot and Healthy Body!
Eight Weeks to Optimum Health: A Proven Program for Taking Full Advantage of Your Body’s Natural Healing Power
And while you are at it, throw in “Bounce” by Mathew Syed, who was the UK Ping Pong champion when he was younger.
I love any book where someone took their passion, documented it, and shared it with us. That’s when you can see the subtleties, the hard work, the luck, the talent, the skill, all come together to form a champion.
Heck, throw in, “An Astronaut’s Guide to Earth” by Commander Chris Hadfield.
Just like us, the president enjoys a good beach read while relaxing in the sun. In 2016, he released his list of summer vacation books:
As a general rule, most new memoirs are mediocre and most business memoirs are even worse. Shoe Dog by Phil Knight is an exception to that rule in every way and as a result, was one of my favorite books of the year and favorite business books ever. I started reading it while on the runway of a flight and figured I’d read a few pages before opening my laptop and working. Instead, my laptop stayed in my bag during the flight and I read almost the entire book in one extended sitting. Ostensibly the memoir of the founder of Nike, it’s really the story of a lost kid trying to find meaning in his life and it ends with him creating a multi-billion dollar company that changes sports forever. I’m not sure if Knight used a ghostwriter (the acknowledgements are unclear) but his personal touches are all over the book—and the book itself is deeply personal and authentic. The afterward is an incredibly moving reflection of a man looking back on his life. I loved this book. It ends just as Nike is starting to turn into the behemoth it would become, so I hold out hope that there may be more books to follow.
Question: What books had the biggest impact on you? Perhaps changed the way you see things or dramatically changed your career path.
- “Zen and the Art of Making a Living: A Practical Guide to Creative Career Design” By Laurence Boldt
- “Horse Sense: The Key to Success Is Finding a Horse to Ride” by Al Ries and Jack Trout
- “What They Don't Teach You at Harvard Business School” by Mark McCormack