Looking to try out a new genre in anime? I have a suggestion. Sports anime!
There are times where I do not feel like wondering if my favorite character will be killed next, or when I am not in the mood for too much drama.
Sports anime have a lot of things in common but one thing that always sticks is the sense of purpose they give.
If you want to boost your mood, witness character growth or watch some healthy competition, here are a few I recommend.
- Ace of the Diamond
This sports anime is adapted from the shonēn baseball manga written and illustrated by Yuji Terajima.
The series follows Eijun Sawamura, a baseball pitcher with a very unusual changeup pitch.
Sawamura plans to go with his friends to a local high school and play baseball. However, one scout from the prestigious Seidou High approaches him and offers him a scholarship and a chance to make it to the nationals. Sawamura decides to pay a visit to the school, and it changes his entire outlook on his future with baseball when he pairs up with the talented catcher, Miyuki Kazuya.
He makes the decision to go to the school and the story begins. In the anime, viewers watch Sawamura grow, experience hardships and enhance his talent.
It has extremely lovable characters and I will be honest, the reason I understand baseball now is because of this anime.
The games are always exciting and the soundtrack always sets the tone for the situation. It is a long series so I was a bit thrown off at first, but once I started I could not stop and now it’s one of my favourite animes.
It is far from boring and if you want a good introduction to sports anime, this is a good watch.
- Run with the Wind
The anime and manga were adapted from a 2006 Japanese novel by Shion Miura.
This is a very short series and its plot is also quite simple.
Its synopsis: Kakeru, a former elite runner at high school, is chased for stealing food. He is saved by a Kansei University student Haiji, who is also a runner. Haiji persuades Kakeru to live in the old dormitory where he plans to team up with fellow residents to enter the Hakone Ekiden relay marathon, one of the most prominent university races in Japan. Kakeru soon finds out that all of the residents except for Haiji and himself are complete novices.
I did not expect much from this when I started it but it really surpassed my expectations. It’s extremely motivational and the growth the characters go through was more than satisfying to witness.
You watch the team grow closer and root for them as they strive for their goal.
In 23 short episodes, this anime will fill you with emotions time and time again. If I could describe it I would say that it is inspirational and healing.
The very famous volleyball anime that a lot of people know. I will say that the hype is deserved!
The anime is adapted from a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Haruichi Furudate.
The story follows Shōyō Hinata, a boy determined to become a great volleyball player despite his small stature.
He gets into Karasuno High School and ends up being teammates with someone he faced in middle school, Kageyama Tobio. Along with the rest of the team, they train and do their best to make it to nationals.
From pacing to the slick animation, it does not fall short in a lot of areas. It is also one of the most realistic ones.
Just like the rest, it has lovable characters. You will also find yourself rooting all the teams including the ones our main characters are facing.
It gives a lot of characters spotlight and teaches a lot about volleyball in general.
The manga has been complete and they recently wrapped up the fourth season, so there is something to look forward to.
If you have been curious to know if this anime is worth the watch, I will be the one to say it is without a doubt worth it.
This is based on a Japanese light novel series written by Kotoko Ayano, with illustrations by Chinatsu Morimoto.
Inspired by the sound that the bowstring makes, Minato Narumiya joins his middle school’s kyūdō club. After a certain incident in his last tournament he takes the route of quitting archery for good.
When he gets to high school, his childhood friends Seiya Takehaya and Ryōhei Yamanouchi try to convince him to join the kyūdō club again, but he refuses. However, an encounter with a mysterious man at an archery range in a forest inspires Minato to take up archery once more.
This 13 episodes series was animated by Kyoto Animations, a studio known to not disappoint with the animation.
This one is more slice of life than the rest and it emphasizes emotions and feelings of change.
It is a short watch and very straightforward. The sport itself is a relaxing watch yet you can sense the tension the characters go through when it is time for them to perform.
This anime basically tells you that there will always be a roadblock in a journey. It’ll be over before you know it and I can say you will be happy you watched it.
These all have a different vibe, but leave you with a good impression. If you are interested in any particular one, they are all available to watch on Crunchyroll.