Russia is one of the most successful countries at a number of sports and continuously finishing in the top rankings at the Olympic Games. The 2014 Sochi Olympics as well as Paralympics became a triumph of Russia’s sport.

Among the most played sports in Russia are basketball, ice hockey and football. Other sports widely played in Russia include team handball, weightlifting, gymnastics, figure skating, biathlon, boxing, wrestling, martial arts, volleyball, rugby union, and skiing.
In the 1960s the Soviet Union rose to become a dominant power in figure skating, especially in pairs skating and ice dancing.

Since the end of the Soviet era, tennis has grown in popularity and Russia has produced a number of famous tennis players. In recent years, the amount of top Russian women players has been considerable, with both Maria Sharapova and Dinara Safina once having reached number one in the WTA rankings. Other Russian women to achieve international success include Anna Chakvetadze, Elena Dementieva, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Anastasia Myskina, Nadia Petrova, Vera Zvonareva and Anna Kournikova. The Russian Federation several times won the Fed Cup.

At the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Russia swept the women's tennis podium with Elena Dementieva winning the gold, Dinara Safina and Vera Zvonareva the silver and bronze, respectively. Russia also boasts two former number 1 men's players—Safina's older brother Marat Safin and Yevgeny Kafelnikov. Russian men currently in the top 50 include Nikolay Davydenko, Igor Andreev, Igor Kunitsyn, and Mikhail Youzhny. The Russian men won the Davis Cup in 2002 and 2006.

Football has always been one of the most popular sports in Russia. Some of the most famous clubs include Spartak Moscow, Lokomotiv Moscow, CSKA Moscow, Zenit St.Petersburg, Dynamo Moscow. A very high proportion of men are interested in football to a certain extent (and many children play it regularly) and women also join men when it comes to the national team.

The Russian national team gained attention when they beat traditional European powerhouses the Netherlands 3-1 in the Euro 2008 quarterfinals. The Russian Premier League is now among the best in Eastern Europe, as evidenced by recent victories in the UEFA Cup (CSKA Moscow defeated Sporting CP in the 2005 final and Zenit St.Petersburg earned a victory over Rangers F.C. in the 2008 UEFA Cup in Manchester) and also claimed the UEFA Super Cup in a 2-1 win over Manchester United.