Sports in Iceland are very popular. For nine recent years, Iceland remains a very healthy nation. Popular sports include handball, football, athletics, basketball, golf, volleyball, tennis, swimming, and chess; horseback riding on Icelandic horses is also popular and recently Australian Football and Archery.
The country’s chess clubs have created many chess Grandmasters including Friðrik Ólafsson, Jóhann Hjartarson, Margeir Pétursson, and Jón Loftur Árnason, and Golf is especially common , but the oldest sport association in Iceland is the Reykjavik Shooting Association, founded 1867. Rifle shooting became very popular in the 19th century and was heavily encouraged by politicians and others pushing for Icelandic independence. Shooting remains popular and all types of shooting with small arms practiced in the country.
Ice and rock climbing are a favorite among many Icelanders; climbing the 4,167-foot Þumall peak in Skaftafell is a challenge for many adventurous climbers, but mountain climbing is considered to be suitable for the general public and is a very common type of leisure activity. Hvítá, among many other of the Icelandic glacial rivers, attracts kayakers and river rafters worldwide.