National Sports Day 2023: Theme, History, Significance, Celebration

Every year August 29 is celebrated as National Sports Day in India. The day marks the birth anniversary of India’s field hockey player, Major Dhyan Chand who is widely regarded as one of the greatest field hockey players in history. Declaration for the celebration of this day was passed in 2012 and the first National Sports Day was observed on 29 August 2012.

National Sports Day 2023 Date

Below mentioned are the upcoming dates for National Sports Day for the next 5 years.

National Sports Day 2023August 29, 2023Tuesday
National Sports Day 2024August 29, 2024Thursday
National Sports Day 2025August 29, 2025Friday
National Sports Day 2026August 29, 2026Saturday
National Sports Day 2027August 29, 2027Sunday

National Sports Day 2023 Overview

EventNational Sports Day 2023
DateAugust 29, 2023
Observed inIndia
PurposeTo honor the achievements of Major Dhyan Chand and celebrate his birth anniversary.

National Sports Day Significance

The main objective behind observing National Sports Day is to encourage sports activities among the youth of the country. The day August 29 was chosen in honor of the greatest Indian hockey player Major Dhyan Chand who was born on the same day in 1905. On this day, National Sports Awards Ceremony is organized where various athletes, individuals and teams, are presented with honors and rewards for their contribution to sports.

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National Sports Day is also celebrated to raise awareness of the value of sports and physical activity in day-to-day life. The first observation was done in 2012 and since then the government has used this day as an occasion to announce several sports-related projects.

History of National Sports Day Observation

In 2012, the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India declared August 29 to be celebrated as National Sports Day of the country. The first celebration of National Sports Day was observed in the same year and every year since then. The year 2023 will mark the 12th anniversary of National Sports Day celebration. August 29 was chosen to commemorate the birth anniversary of great field hockey player Major Dhyan Chand.

Who was Major Dhyan Chand?

National Sports Day is observed on August 29 to honor the legacy of probably the greatest field hockey of India Major Dhyan Chand. His extraordinary game led India to win the field hockey event in seven out of eight Olympics from 1928 to 1964. Dhyan Chand himself went to win three consecutive Olympic gold medals, in 1928, 1932 and 1936.

He was termed as Mohammed Ali of hockey by BBC and also earned the nicknames The Wizard or The Magician of hockey owing to his superior ball control skills. Dhyan Chand died in 1979 after suffering from liver cancer but still remains a legendary figure in Indian and world hockey.

Dhyan Chand was awarded India’s third highest civilian honor, the Padma Bhushan in 1956. Moreover, there are many awards that are named in his honor, Major Dhyan Chand Award for Lifetime Achievements in Sports and Games being the most noted. In 2021, the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports renamed Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award as Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award in his honor.

Celebration of National Sports Day

To celebrate National Sports Day, the Government of India presents multiple honors and awards to teams and players. Sports heroes are recognized for their contributions to sports and a ceremony is held where the President of India presents various awards at the Presidential Palace. As an individual, you can organize and participate in sport events of your choice. Make a team with your friends or participate in school based events organized on the occasion of National Sports Day.

Learn more about Major Dhyan Chand and other historic sportsperson of the country and their contribution to Indian sports. Playing sports is also important for physical well-being. Spread this message among your peers and encourage them to participate in sporting events as well.

National Sports Day in Other Countries

Other than India, the following countries also celebrate their National Sports Day on different dates as mentioned in the table below.

Country National Sports Day
Bahrain Second week of February
Iran October 17
Japan Second Monday of October
Malaysia Second Saturday of October
Qatar Second Tuesday of February

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When do we celebrate National Sports Day in India?

August 29

What is the national sport of India?

There is no official national sport of India.

Isn’t hockey the national sport of India?

According to the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, the government has not declared any sport as the national game of India with the objective to encourage all popular sports disciplines.

What are the popular sports in India?

Hockey, cricket, kabbadi, football, badmintion, tennis, etc are some of the most popular sports in India.

What is the theme of National Sports Day 2023?

There is no theme for observing National Sports Day in any year.

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