The 10 sports with the most licensees in France

As the school and sports start approaching, here are the sports that attract the most licensees in France.

Football: 1.896.208 licensees

Registrations have experienced the repercussions of the health crisis for the 2020-2021 season. Proof, football fell below two million licensees (1.896.208) for the first time since the 2012-2013 season, the site reported

However, it remains the sport with the most licensees in France.

Tennis: 950,000 licensees

Tennis comes in second place but has also suffered from the pandemic. Between October 2019 and 2020, the yellow ball sport lost 30,000 licensees. This year, the Federation registered 950,000 registrations.

Horse riding: 664,178 licensees

The only sport not impacted by the Covid-19. Despite the health crisis, horse riding has seen an increase in registrations.

As of August 14, the riding federation shared the number of 664,178 dismissed. That is more than 60,000 in one year (601,166). Horse riding is also the sport where women are the most represented with 8 out of 10 licensees.

Basketball 514.776 licensees

If outdoor practice was able to limit the damage, indoor sports were not so lucky and were subject to stricter rules. This is particularly felt on basketball which saw its number of licensees drop in 2021: 514,776. During the 2018-2019 season, basketball had yet passed the 700,000 licensees for the first time in its history.

The performances of the Blue (s) at the Olympic Games in Tokyo (silver medal for men and bronze for women) will perhaps allow the sport with the orange ball to bounce back this year in number of licensees. The federation notably communicated on the possession of a health pass in order to be able to register.

Judo: 370,251 licensees

Last January, the team published the underside of two damning pre-reports, one from the Court of Auditors and the other from the General Inspectorate of Education, Sport and Research (Igser), on mismanagement in the French federation of judo and associated disciplines (FFJDA).

The federation has seen a sharp drop in attendance at its dojos in recent years. Teddy Riner’s exploits were not enough to revive the kimono sport which now has 370,251 licensees.

Golf 402.991 licensees

Golf saw a limited drop in membership (-3.39%). In 2020, the federation had registered 402,991 licensees. A lesser evil for one of the sports whose practice costs the most in this Top 10.

We must add to this total a number of “leisure” practitioners, who do not necessarily have a license.


Handball is also suffering from the crisis with a sharp drop in membership in these clubs. Close to 500,000 in 2019, the number of licensees was 334,588 in 2021.

The less strict health measures for the practice of indoor sport and the two gold medals obtained in Tokyo by the women’s and men’s teams may help attract new licensees this season.

Swimming 316,000 licensees

The federation also manages sports swimming, diving, water polo, synchronized swimming and open water competitions.

As reported by The world, “The closure of swimming pools to prevent the spread of the virus, put in place before the re-containment, also had a heavy impact on the workforce (- 25.13%)”.

Pétanque 280,000 licensees

Here again, the health measures have dealt a serious blow to the number of dismissed workers. “Last year, there were 280,000 licensees,” confided in February to the New Republic Clément Meneghin, communications officer at the French Federation (FFPJP). As of January 31, 2021, only 96,000 have renewed their license. That is to say a drop of nearly 65% ​​of the workforce ”.

Rugby 286,035 licensees

Less impacted than indoor sports, rugby also communicated on a 4.73% increase in its number of licensees. The French rugby federation claims 1,950 clubs.

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