11 Anime Like Fighting Spirit

Fighting Spirit, commonly known as Hajime no Ippo, is one of the most highly-regarded sports anime of all-time. Even though it came out 16 years ago, it still holds up today. If you're a fan of Fighting Spirit and want to watch some anime like it, then take a moment to read this article. Below, I've listed, in no particular order, 11 great anime that are similar to Fighting Spirit.





1) Great Teacher Onizuka


Eikichi Onizuka is a 22-year-old ex-gang member and a virgin. While peeping up girls' skirts at a local shopping mall, Onizuka meets a girl who agrees to go out on a date with him. Onizuka's attempt to sleep with her fails when her current "boyfriend", her teacher, shows up at the love hotel they are in and asks her to return to him. The teacher is old and unattractive, but has sufficient influence over her that she leaps from a second-story window and lands in his arms. Onizuka, upon seeing this display of a teacher's power over girls, decides to become a teacher himself.

Source: Great Teacher Onizuka, used under CC-BY-SA 3.0


2) Yowamushi Pedal


Since he was a little boy, Onoda has ridden his city bicycle (referred to as a "Mommy Bike" in the anime) – a simple and bulky bicycle designed for short rides – for transportation and fun. A fellow freshman, and much more serious cyclist, named Shunsuke Imaizumi notices Onoda riding his mamachari and mocks him inwardly until he sees Onoda riding up a steep hill with little effort. Another student named Naruko visits Akihabara to get some plastic Gundam models for his younger brothers and meets Onoda, who catches his attention because of the his cycling skill on the mamachari. Later on, both Naruko and Imaizumi try to convince him to join the bicycle racing club at their high school, Sohoku.

Source: Yowamushi Pedal, used under CC-BY-SA 3.0

3) Hikaru no Go


While exploring his grandfather's shed, Hikaru stumbles across a Go board haunted by the spirit of Fujiwara-no-Sai, a Go player from the Heian era. Sai wishes to play Go again, having not been able to since the late Edo period, when his ghost appeared to Honinbo Shusaku, a top Go player of that period. Sai's greatest desire is to attain the Kami no Itte – a perfect move. Because Hikaru is apparently the only person who can perceive him, Sai inhabits a part of Hikaru's mind as a separate personality, coexisting, although not always comfortably, with the young boy.

Source: Hikaru no Go, used under CC-BY-SA 3.0


4) Eyeshield 21


In Tokyo, a weak, unassertive boy named Sena Kobayakawa enters the high school of his choice—Deimon Private Senior High School. Sena's only remarkable physical abilities are his running speed and agility, which are noted by the school's American football team captain Yoichi Hiruma. Hiruma forces Sena to join the Deimon Devil Bats football team as its running back. To protect his identity from other teams who want to recruit him, Sena is forced to publicly assume the role of team secretary and enter the field under the pseudonym of "Eyeshield 21" wearing a helmet with an eyeshield to hide his features.

Source: Eyeshield 21, used under CC-BY-SA 3.0

5) Kuroko's Basketball


The basketball team of Teiko Middle School rose to distinction by demolishing all competition. The regulars of the team became known as the "Generation of Miracles". After graduating from middle school, these five stars went to different high schools with top basketball teams. However, a fact few know is that there was another player in the "Generation of Miracles": a phantom sixth man. This mysterious player is now a freshman at Seirin High, a new school with a powerful, if little-known, team. Now, Tetsuya Kuroko – "the sixth member of the "Generation of Miracles", and Taiga Kagami – a naturally talented player who spent most of middle school in the US, aim to bring Seirin to the top of Japan and begin taking on Kuroko's former teammates one by one.

Source: Kuroko's Basketball, used under CC-BY-SA 3.0

6) Baki the Grappler


Baki is raised by his wealthy and money-obsessive mother, Emi Akezawa, who also funds his training in the hopes that he can be a powerful warrior like his father. Around the start of the series, Baki outgrows traditional training and heads out to follow the path of his ruthless father's training and meets many powerful fighters along the way.

Source: Baki the Grappler, used under CC-BY-SA 3.0






7) Slam Dunk


Hanamichi Sakuragi is a delinquent and the leader of a gang. He is very unpopular with girls, having been rejected an astonishing fifty times. In his first year at Shohoku High School, he meets Haruko Akagi, the girl of his dreams, and is overjoyed when she is not repulsed or scared of him like all the other girls he has asked out. Haruko, recognizing Sakuragi's athleticism, introduces him to the Shohoku basketball team.

Source: Slam Dunk (manga), used under CC-BY-SA 3.0




8) Initial D


Takumi Fujiwara is an eighteen-year-old high school student who usually appears aloof and uninterested in most things. Along with his best friend Itsuki, they both work at a gas station. They are friends with a young man named Iketani, leader of the Akina Speedstars, a local racing team, and their manager Yuichi. One night, Iketani brings the two up Mount Akina to experience the life of a street racer. But just in time, the RedSuns from Mount Akagi led by the Takahashi brothers have come to challenge the Speedstars to a race. What they don’t know is the fastest car on the downhill is an Eight-Six and that is what Takumi uses to deliver tofu every morning.

Source: List of Initial D episodes, used under CC-BY-SA 3.0

9) Baby Steps


The story of Baby Steps follows Eiichirō Maruo. Maruo is an honor student who manages to get straight A's in all of his classes from his meticulous note taking. One day he decides that he needs to put more exercise into his schedule and finds a pamphlet for a free tennis class. Eiichirō attends and falls in love with the game. He slowly turns his habits from studying for class to studying for tennis.

Source: List of Baby Steps episodes, used under CC-BY-SA 3.0

10) Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple


The story of Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple follows Kenichi Shirahama, a 16-year-old high school student and a long-time victim of bullying. While travelling home one day, Kenichi encounters a group of thugs. Kenichi is awe-struck when a new transfer student, Miu Furinji, easily defeats them. On Miu's advice, he heads to the Ryōzanpaku Dojo to train in martial arts.

Source: Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple and List of Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple episodes, used under CC-BY-SA 3.0




11) Ashita no Joe


Joe Yabuki is a troubled young man who runs away from an orphanage. Wandering through the Tokyo slums, he meets former boxing trainer Danpei. Joe is later arrested and goes to a temporary jail where he fights Nishi, leader of a group of hooligans. He and Nishi then go to a juvenile prison miles away from Tokyo. There Joe meets Rikiishi, a former boxing prodigy, and a rivalry develops between them.

Source: Ashita no Joe, used under CC-BY-SA 3.0

I hope you found something on this list that interests you. What other anime do you know of that are like Fighting Spirit? Also, what other good sports anime would you recommend to people?

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