How do I present my hobbies & interests on my resume?

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Consider the following sentences.
"I play football."
"I won the Ross Cup in football."
"I play football 5 days a week and I won the Ross Cup at Brazil in 2016."

Which claim sounds more authentic? Right, the one with most details.

Now that we know you like football, the question is:

Should you put hobbies and interests on a resume? And how should you present a list of hobbies and interests for resume?

Remember how your uncle would ask you to write everything down in your resume just so the recruiter accepts you however you are? Well, there has been considerable debate over whether resume hobbies and resume interests should be listed.

Hiration provides you customized resume templates designed exclusively by our professionals post extensive research. You can directly build your resume in our Online Resume Builder.

Here are the classification of hobbies and interests in resume:

However, if you are a DIY freak, we have got some amazing tips and tricks.

This post will cover the following topics:

Note: In case you want to get right on to using professionally made resume templates which have all aspects covered on how to write hobbies and interests on a resume, you can use our resume builder. You can also use the code below to avail a 50% discount on your resume! It will only cost you $6 to make your resume.


Why and when do I need a resume hobbies section?

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Your resume is a document of your professional experiences. Your dance classes and chess tutorials do not essentially count.

However, a resume hobbies section is often necessary in case of no or less work experience. This is to make the recruiters understand where you may have been busy at.

The rule of thumb for including a resume hobbies section:

Work Experience (in years) 0 <5 >5
Should you? Yes Maybe No

So, what about the Maybe?

You take a call. If you have space, why not? But remember that an achievement is always worth more than a basic hobby/interest that might not deliver the necessary impact.

The ice breaker

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The best function of a hobby is that it works as an icebreaker at interviews.

However, it works for candidates with less than 5 years of work experience.

A 28+ years experiences professional would statistically not be asked questions about their rock band in school.

You can also research the company you're targeting and see if they indulge in any employee engagement initiatives pertaining to sports, outdoor interests, etc.

Let's say your preferred company takes part in an annual tennis championship with other corporate entities in the same sector. And as it turns out, you played tennis in college.

Not only will this be to your advantage, it shows that you have done your research and would be an organic fit in the organization.

Resume Example Showing Hobbies & Interests on a Resume

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It can be difficult to describe abstract interests and hobbies in an impactful way.
Here's a complete resume sample containing a separate section for hobbies and interests that might give you an idea:

Lucy Ricardo
Senior Research Analyst & Certified Game Developer
  • Ranked 9th in the Call of Duty World League (CWL) - Black Ops 4 | 2018
  • Member, International Game Developers Association (IGDA)
  • Member, American Gaming Association (AGA)
Volunteering Experience
  • Assisting in redesigning the curriculum for McMillan's Shelter Home for Boys by gamifying difficult concepts as a volunteer teacher at the Make A Difference nonprofit
  • Appointed as the Contributing Writer at the Gaming Weekly magazine
  • Travelled to 15+ countries in the last 18 months
Game Development
Team Management & Leadership
Data Collation & Analysis
System Development
Project Execution
Social Media Campaigning
Conference Monitoring
Deck Preparation
  • Software: Phaser.JS
  • Programming Language: HTML5, JavaScript
  • Certification in Game Development with Phaser.JS | Codecademy | Jan '19 - Jan '19
  • Learn Phaser: Basics | Learn Phaser Physics | Learn Phaser Animations | Learn Phaser: Visual Effects
Project 1
  • Created an action-adventure style fantasy story in Phaser by deploying Click
Project 2
  • Recreated arcade classic: Space Invaders, in the form of Bug Invaders
Project 3
  • Developed a game with scene transitions, animations, and tweens
Senior Research Analyst - Team Lead
Certified Game Developer
Enter text here..

Enter text here..

Start typing, then use the up and down arrows to select an option from the list
    A global research and advisory firm providing information, advice, and tools for leaders in IT, finance, HR, etc. with revenue worth USD 1 billion
    Team Management & Leadership
    • Spearheaded a team of 4 to execute social media listening projects including campaign & conference monitoring
    • Oversaw finalization of keywords, data extraction & deck preparation by deploying multiple software and tools
    • Supervised preparation of final presentations via graphs & pivots to generate quantitative & qualitative insights
    Data Collation & Analysis
    • Deployed analytical tools like Radian 6 for gathering data from social media platforms to curate & present insights
    • Collated & evaluated data available from online sources like news organizations & multiple social media platforms
    • Analyzed the data collated for rendering assistance to clients in designing campaigns for research & marketing
    Key Achievements
    • Formulated 25+ reports for effectively serving ~15 clients to render insights about the product’s market presence
    • Conducted research for US-based pharma companies in markets like US, UK, Japan & Europe
    Market Analyst | Sep '13 - Mar '15
    • Deployed primary research methodologies by collating data of pharma companies based in the US to perform analysis
    Yale University
    Start typing, then use the up and down arrows to select an option from the list
      A private Ivy League research university in New Haven, Connecticut with an academic staff of over 4k professionals
      • GPA: 3.5/5
      • Languages: English and Chinese

      Making a list of hobbies and interests on a resume

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      Your resume will go through various stages of processing.

      It is filtered by an ATS for certain keywords before it lands in the hands of a human recruiter.

      If your resume clears the ATS filter, the hiring manager will draw some conclusions about you by looking at the resume hobbies and resume interests.

      It is highly important that you have unique hobbies and interests to put on resume to differentiate you from competition.

      The entire process can become very tiring!

      So, it's best that you start by creating a list of hobbies on resume that you will list.

      Read on to know how.

      How to classify hobbies and personal interests on resume?

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      Following is an exhaustive list of hobbies from wikipedia:

      Indoor hobbies and personal interests on resume

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      Only indoor hobbies on resume and indoor personal interests on resume might represent you as an introvert. This could deem you fit for profiles which do not necessarily require social interaction - coding, writing, etc.

      However, some indoor hobbies on resume and personal interests on resume demonstrate good reasoning and great patience. Achievements in chess and scrabble might reflect highly on the candidate's intelligence.

      They are best suited in the fields that involve calculative risk-taking, strategic planning and analysis.

      Quick tip: The unique resume hobbies list like coffee brewing, flower arranging, haiku, etc. can be a double-edged sword. It is best to avoid them on your resume if you're applying for a managerial role which requires business-friendly skills.

      However, these skills are good for special circumstances wherein you are required to apply specifically in these arenas.

      List of indoor resume hobbies or common indoor personal interests on resume:

      • 3D printing
      • Embroidery
      • Reading
      • Baking
      • Fishkeeping
      • Sculpting
      • Calligraphy
      • Gaming
      • Sewing
      • Coloring
      • Quilling
      • Singing
      • Computer Programming
      • Magic Performances
      • Table Tennis
      • Cooking
      • Painting
      • Digital Designing
      • Crossword Puzzles
      • Photography
      • Writing
      • Cryptography
      • Instrument Playing
      • Yoga

      Outdoor hobbies and personal interests on resume

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      Outdoor hobbies and personal interests on a resume exhibit adventurous and risk-taking abilities of a person.

      They showcase a person's nature of coming out of their comfort zone and working proficiently under pressure which is important for administration and leadership positions.

      Quick tip: This resume hobbies list might be a huge turn off for the recruiter that is serious and work committed in fields like medicine. However, it makes you a good strategist who is adept at planning and getting the work done.

      List of hobbies on resume or common personal interests on resume that are conducted outdoors:

      • Archery
      • Horseback Riding
      • Sailing
      • Baseball
      • Martial Arts
      • Scouting
      • Basketball
      • Motor Sports
      • Scuba Diving
      • Bird Watching
      • Mountain Biking
      • Shooting
      • Bodybuilding
      • Mountaineering
      • Skateboarding
      • Driving
      • Powerlifting
      • Skiing
      • Fishing
      • Rafting
      • Skydiving
      • Gardening
      • Road Biking
      • Surfing
      • Graffiti
      • Rock Climbing
      • Swimming
      • Handball
      • Roller Skating
      • Taekwondo
      • Hiking
      • Rugby
      • Water Sports

      Collection hobbies and personal interests on resume

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      Collection hobbies and personal interests on resume are a good way to show that someone has a nature for perseverance and usually shows an exquisite approach to situations.

      These unique hobbies and personal interests on resume must be listed when the creative aspect of a person is to be highlighted.

      You may list these resume hobbies and resume interests when it relates to the fields like designing, crafting and in certain job profiles related to Human and Public resources.

      Quick tip: It may not work well in an independent workspace where free flow of ideas and thoughts are required. It maybe too conservative.

      List of collective hobbies on resume and common collective personal interests on resume:

      Indoor Collection Hobbies in resume:

      • Book Collection
      • Stamp & Postcard Collection
      • Card & Coin Collection
      • Video Game Collection
      • Movie Collection
      • Vintage Collection

      Outdoor Collection Hobbies in resume:

      • Antiquities
      • Insect Collection
      • Flower Collecting
      • Seashell collecting
      • Fossil Hunting
      • Flower Pressing

      Competitive hobbies and interests in resume

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      Competitive hobbies and personal interests on resume display fierce ability to achieve a goal in a person, once it is set.

      Indoor competitive resume hobbies list exhibits that the person is very stern and resilient. He is prone to believing in himself more than others.

      This is an up point for roles that involve leading as he must believe and be true to himself even when others are not.

      Outdoor competitive resume hobbies list subjects a person's taste for teamwork, loyalty and commitment to your team in times of pressure and adversity. They develop strength and agility in a person.

      This is very helpful in areas that pertain to long working hours outdoors.
      Example: field surveys, site visits, sports trainer, yoga, pilates, dancing etc.

      Quick tip: When combined with people and/or language skills, it can be great for jobs like sales where you require interaction with people.
      Classification of competitive hobbies on resume and common personal interests on resume based on where they are undertaken:

      Indoor Competitive Hobbies in resume:

      • Badminton
      • Chess
      • Wrestling
      • Boxing
      • Martial Arts
      • Weightlifting

      Outdoor Competitive Hobbies in resume:

      • Archery
      • Cricket
      • Golfing
      • Baseball
      • Cycling
      • Climbing
      • Swimming
      • Horseback Riding
      • Ice Hockey
      • Tennis
      • Volleyball
      • Surfing

      Observational hobbies in resume

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      Indoor observational hobbies on resume and indoor observational personal interests on resume demonstrate the person's ability to sit and examine.

      They are capable of analyzing small changes in a secluded environment, away from all the distractions. But they may not be suited for highly noisy work environments.

      Jobs that require precision and seclusion like design, coding, planning, etc. are likely to be appropriate for these people.

      Outdoor observational resume hobbies list portrays a person's ability to sense the smallest changes in chaotic places.

      Outdoor observational hobbies and personal interests on resume are appropriate for figuring out flaws in the other person's strategy or body language. These people can even favor the outcome according to their whim.

      Quick tip: This is a very awesome opportunity for a** business analyst, interviewer** and certain finance/marketing job profiles.

      List of hobbies on resume or common personal interests on resume that are known as observational hobbies:

      Indoor Observational Hobbies in resume:

      • Fishkeeping
      • Learning
      • Microscopy

      Outdoors Observational Hobbies in resume:

      • Aircraft Spotting
      • Birdwatching
      • Photography
      • Astronomy
      • Geocaching
      • Satellite
      • Meteorology
      • Astrology
      • Hiking
      • Meteorology

      Can you discuss religion and politics on your resume?

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      The unique resume hobbies / resume interests that connect to religion, politics and other taboo topics are best left unattended.

      Discussions of business plans, finance or code schemes can result in conflicting views. In a growth mindset, this is a room for change. But in an orthodox environment, this might hurt the sentiments of the other person.

      However, if used with caution, they can be put to your best interests.

      Example: If you are planning to work at a missionary school or a Christian library, you may mention your personal interests on resume as "Reading Bible and other holy books" but it would be better to leave it as *"Reading English Literature" *at a top industry analyst firm.

      Different companies means different hobbies on resume

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      The classification presented in the sections above will help you pick hobbies and personal interests on resume. But sometimes, a company's setting and work environment will matter the most.

      Example: A company that has a sports team that excels in tennis is likely to recruit you if you play tennis. This is because it will help the company maintain its image in the social and industrial setting.

      However, it is highly unlikely that these personal interests on resume will be given preference over required technical skills.

      Unique hobbies and personal interests on resume?

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      Having quirky and unique hobbies and personal interests on resume is an amazing way to gather attention!

      Break through the stereotypes!

      It is not necessary that you have to have the generic photography or football as a hobby.

      If you are doing something out of the box, you should take pride in it.Frame it just as you would do with a common hobby or personal interests on resume.

      Don't shy away from mentioning the unusual ones. Playing the cards safely may make you stand out more.

      Stating your exciting resume hobbies and resume interests makes you interesting in the cold robotic machine-driven world!

      It portrays the real you and your involvement with your own self.

      When someone has a unique hobby, they come across as creative.

      Hobbies and personal interests on resume can become the central point of discussion in an interview.

      Time-consuming hobbies on resume present you as a dedicated person. They might also present you as being hard-minded and cracking a nut without many tools.Care should be taken to only state the list of resume hobbies that are not very time consuming.

      So have you been volunteering at your local bird shelter or collecting matchboxes and want to boast about it?

      Don't be afraid and** go ahead** with it.

      A big thumbs up!

      Important note: Senior level resumes require a more professional outlook so it would be better if your job experience itself denotes your resume interests rather than having to list them separately. It must be your past job choices that are interesting enough to drive the recruiter to hire you.

      How many resume interests can you list?

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      After an extensive research of resume writing by our professionals, we suggest at most 5 hobbies on resume be listed authentically.

      Mentioning an extensive list of hobbies and personal interests on resume might be an issue as the person may come out to be extremely distributive. Having so many hobbies on resume might not resonate well with the recruiter.

      It makes you appear fickle and the recruiter might perceive you as a frequent job switcher. The recruiter might think that you will not able to deliver your work well. So why risk your application!

      However, if you really want to elaborate your coolest resume hobbies, you might do that in the cover letter. Cover letter provides space and is longer than the 2 page personal resume. It also has room for explaining.

      What to do if you don't have any hobbies and interests on resume?

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      Entering into the field of jobs? New to writing a personal resume?

      Freaked out about having no cool hobbies on resume?

      We have got some solutions to fill out your list of resume interests!

      Volunteer Work: You can start with some volunteer work. It is a very cool way to enhance your resume. It is easy to discover and helps in your participation with the community.

      It inculcates compassion, empathy and strong moral values. It has no material profit but brings peace of mind. It is the best social hobby to maintain.

      You can mention your volunteer work if your resume deals in subjects like medicine, philosophy, psychiatry etc.

      Various volunteer works may include working at an animal shelter home, helping at a vet, an old age home, an orphanage, a plant drive, a blood donation bank, a blind school or simply helping the students in your community with their studies.

      But how do I list hobbies & interests in the resume?

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      Do not simply state Archery or Quilling as your interest. You could, but they would not add any value or valor.

      Therefore, you should always back your key phrases up with information around what you have achieved in that domain.

      Hiration Pro-tip: Performance figures will always help. Instead of saying "Good in debates", mention "Won the Inter-University Debate Championship encompassing 20+ colleges and 500+ participants"

      Listing false hobbies and personal interests on resume is a big NO!

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      Stating a list of hobbies and resume interests that are false is very common.
      But it is a big no-no!

      You should not use false hobbies on resume as a bait to fit the recruiter's criteria.

      It may come off as casual attitude and might backfire in case they find out later.

      How to present the resume hobbies and personal interests on resume section?

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      Good hobbies and interests for resume would be the ones that adds value, both in terms of quality and quantity.

      Frame the points on your resume with correct grammar. The quality is of paramount importance.

      Quantify it accordingly and express all the statistics clearly. Your medals, certificates and titles instantly gives you an edge over others who write a hobby just for the sake of having an interesting resume.

      For ex:

      1. Stating your personal interests on resume about collecting coins would be too vague for the employer. Instead, express how many different coins across what all eras or countries do you have.

      2. Personal interests on resume about writing poetry could be too naïve for a company who is into finance and marketing. *Provide a link to your blog with certain likes and shares to level up their interest. *

      Quick tip: You could use some power verbs to make your cool hobbies and personal interests on resume stand out. Have a look at them at this link .

      Examples of hobbies and interests on a resume

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      We have got some pre-drafted examples of resume hobby ideas for you:

      A quick (and last) tip would be to** end the resume with your cool resume hobbies and best personal resume interests** as the recruiters might not be interested in reading them. They may consider it offensive or a waste of their time.

      Absolutely YES!

      Happy resume writing!

      Have you figured out the most interesting hobbies and interests for your resume? For any doubts or queries, give us a shout out in the comments.