Its professional league is the Latvian Hockey Higher League, held since 1931.

In Latvia there are also several amateur hockey leagues.

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After Latvia was occupied by the Soviet Union in 1940, its membership in the IIHF was interrupted.

Latvians had a significant role in establishing ice hockey in the Soviet Union.

The Latvian national team participated in the final stage of the 2004 European Football Championship.

The leading scorer for the Latvian national football team is Māris Verpakovskis.

The best season for Dinamo Rīga came in 1987/1988, the first season when the Soviet Elite League instituted an NHL-style playoff system.

Dinamo Rīga finished third in the regular season and upset Dynamo Moscow in the semi-finals, before losing to CSKA Moscow, the perennial Soviet champions of the 1980s, in the finals.

Some of Latvia’s most notable athletes include hockey player Sandis Ozoliņš, football player Māris Verpakovskis, olympic javelin thrower Jānis Lūsis, two-time Olympic BMX champion Maris Strombergs, and basketball player Kristaps Porziņģis.

Association football was the most popular sport in Latvia during the first period of independence (1918–1940).

Latvia's Dinamo Rīga team was one of eleven teams which played in the first Soviet championship tournament in the winter of 1946/1947.

The Latvian Harijs Mellups was the goaltender for the Soviet Union National team in its first international game in 1948.

After Latvia regained independence in 1991, Latvia restored its membership in the IIHF and the Latvian national team returned to international competitions.