Day of Physical Culture and Sport in Azerbaijan Date in the current year: March 5, 2016

Day of Physical Culture and Sport in Azerbaijan On March 5, Azerbaijan celebrates a national observance known as Day of Physical Culture and Sport. It was proclaimed in 2005 by President Ilham Aliyev.

Ilham Aliyev established this holiday in recognition of the importance of physical culture in strengthening health of the Azerbaijani people, particularly youth. Day of Physical Culture and Sport also celebrates the achievements of the Azerbaijani sportsmen who represent their country at international competitions.

Sport in Azerbaijan has ancient roots, and many traditional sports are still practiced along with modern ones. The country's national sport is freestyle wrestling. However, today the most popular sports include chess and football.

Azerbaijan has been participating at the Olympic Games as an independent nation since 1996. As of 2015, Azerbaijani athletes have won 26 medals at the Summer Olympics, in wrestling (4 gold, 5 silver, 5 bronze), shooting (1 gold, 2 bronze), judo (1 gold, 1 bronze), boxing (6 bronze), and weightlifting (1 bronze).

Azerbaijani athletes have also shown good results in futsal, rhythmic gymnastics, volleyball, rugby, kickboxing. The country has hosted several major sport competitions.

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