Psychology of Playing Fanstasy Sports: Motivations and Harmful Effects

Fantasy sports have been Quiet popular for decades, but the rise of the internet and social media has transformed the way we engage with them. Today, millions of people play fantasy sports online, participating in leagues with friends, family members, and strangers from all over the world.

The latest research “India Fantasy Sports Market: Industry Trends, Share, Size, Growth, Opportunity and Forecast 2023-2028” by IMARC Group, finds that the fantasy sports in India is expected to show a growth rate (CAGR) of 44.6% during 2023-2028.

The fantasy sports sector of India’s online gaming market was valued at around Rs 22 billion in FY 2022, according to Statista. The segment’s market size is expected to exceed 50 billion by FY 2025.

Fantasy games prove to be an excellent recreation that allows players to earn real money and rewards and help the participants improve their decision-making capabilities, enhance their learning ability, and provide deep insights into numerous games

Fantasy sports have become a mode of entertainment, a way to connect with others, and even a source of income for some. In this article, we’ll explain the psychology of fantasy sports and how they impact our behavior and emotions.

What are Fantasy Sports?

Fantasy sports are games in which players assemble virtual teams of real-life athletes and compete against each other based on the players’ actual statistical performance in real-world games. These games require participants to research players, analyze data, and make strategic decisions. While the most popular fantasy sports are football, basketball, baseball, cricket and hockey, there are fantasy leagues for many other sports as well.

The Psychology of Fantasy Sports Fantasy sports can be seen as a form of real-life competition, where players compete for status, recognition, and, in some cases, financial gain. The psychology of fantasy sports involves several factors that contribute to why people enjoy playing them.

Social Connection:

Fantasy sports provide a way for people to connect with others who share their interests. People often form groups with friends or co-workers, and this can create a sense of camaraderie and community. Even when playing with strangers, participants can feel a sense of belonging to a larger group.


Competition is a key motivator of human behavior, and fantasy sports offer a way to engage in friendly competition with others. Participants can track their progress against others in their league, and this can create a sense of accomplishment and pride.


Fantasy sports give participants a sense of control over an otherwise uncontrollable situation. Participants can select their own team, make trades, and decide who to start each week. This sense of control can be empowering and satisfying.


Fantasy sports can provide a temporary escape from the stresses and challenges of real life. Participants can immerse themselves in the game and forget about their problems for a while.

Cognitive Challenge:

Fantasy sports require participants to analyze data, make decisions, and adapt to changing circumstances. This cognitive challenge can be engaging and stimulating, and it can provide a sense of intellectual accomplishment.

Fantasy Sports Harmful Impacts

The Dark Side of Fantasy Sports While fantasy sports can be a fun and engaging pastime, they can also have a dark side. Here are some of the potential downsides of fantasy sports:


Like any form of gambling, fantasy sports can be addictive. Participants can become obsessed with their teams, spending hours each day analyzing data and making decisions. This can lead to neglect of other areas of life, including work, relationships, and health.

E-sport arena, 3d rendering illustration.


Fantasy sports can give participants a false sense of expertise in real-life sports. This can lead to overconfidence and poor decision-making, both in the context of fantasy sports and in real life.


Fantasy sports can be frustrating when things don’t go as planned. Participants can become disappointed and disillusioned when their team loses or when their players underperform.


Fantasy sports can create conflict among friends and family members. Disagreements over trades, player selections, and league rules can lead to tension and even the breakdown of relationships.

Risk of Scams:

As the popularity of fantasy sports has grown, so too have scams and frauds. Participants should be cautious about sharing personal and financial information online and should only play with reputable websites and leagues.

Conclusion Fantasy sports can be a fun and engaging way to connect with others, engage in friendly competition, and escape from the stresses of real life.

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