Sports fans, you are truly blessed. Where once upon a time your reading material was limited solely to newspapers, magazines and books, today there is an absolute wealth of great content online – on websites and blogs, and also via magazines in digital format.
Yes, for those sporting fanatics who cannot get enough of their passion, who live and breathe sport, they are spoilt for choice when it comes to reading. Here are just five of the very best reads, both in print and online. If you want to find sports magazines there’s a huge range available.
Arguably the most respected sports media brand in the world, Sports Illustrated has long been established as the voice of authority in US sport. It might be famed for its annual ‘Swimsuit Issue’ but SI goes far and beyond bikini-inspired photography. Its coverage is comprehensive: USA sport’s big four – NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL – is analysed in microscopic detail but so too is college football, soccer, tennis, motorsport…et al.
A visionary concept, The Blizzard is the discerning read for football lovers.
A quarterly publication, it’s relatively new – the 18th edition came out in September 2015 – and available as a ‘coffee table’ hard copy or in various digital formats. It also has a ‘pay what you want’ model. Its pitch is this – ‘a cooperative of top class football journalists and authors from across the globe, enjoying the space and freedom to write about the football stories that matter to them.’ Not a speed read, it’s content to be savoured.
Fight fans have had a near constant reading companion in the form of Boxing News, the weekly boxing bible that was launched back in 1909. As a resource its information is exhaustive – schedules, rankings and news – and there’s probably not a single punch thrown anywhere in the world of boxing (in the ring or in the gym) that BN doesn’t cover. The website has an excellent section devoted to training, showing sparring sessions and other gym work, as well as nutritional advice.
With freely distributed magazines now the norm it’s easy to forget that just under a decade ago, Sport was a ground breaking idea when it was launched. Already established in Paris, the UK version hit the streets in 2006 – handed out for free around tube and mainland rail stations every Friday morning in London. What set it apart from the thin, free newspapers already in circulation was the quality of the publication – full colour, genuinely well written, A-list sporting superstars on the cover and interviewed within. It’s still going strong today, and it can be read online for those who live outside the capital.
Over the years the Guardian has evolved into a near-perfect platform for sports fans. While other UK media broadsheet heavyweights – notably The Times – moved to a subscription model, the Guardian has kept its content free. Its sport coverage is excellent; all the news and match and events report you’d expect, plus a plethora of other content, including lengthier features and lighter content such as The Knowledge and The Fiver (a witty daily email). Best of all is the Sports Network, which showcases great writing from other websites.