Difference Between Hobby and Interest in SSB Interview

Difference Between Hobby and Interest in SSB Interview
20-December 2019 2.00


Are you new to English language? Do you like to look up for new terminologies? Even if you don’t, a common feature of humans is to constantly seek knowledge and resolve their confusion.

An often uttered confusion by laymen as well as professionals is difference between hobbies and interests. There is just a thin line of distinction which separates the above two notions. The underlying difference comes under the umbrella term ‘TIME’.

Yes, it might sound so trivial but time is the actual mode of variation between hobby and interest. Hobby is an activity that is carried in one’s leisure time, in one’s free time. On the other hand, interests refer to activities for which a person especially takes out time.

The name itself suggests that interest is something which arouses your curiosity, your urge to know that task or field more and more. Hence it’s obvious you would take out quality time from your working hours to pursue it. Talking about hobby it is something which you already know and might even be an expert of it. Hence you pursue it in your leisure time as it gives you happiness, peace and is a mode of relaxing.


  • Apart from the above major difference, here is a list of some minute variations between hobbies and differences:



Long term

Short term

Remains static (constant)

Keeps changing (dynamic in nature)

A hobby can be an interest

An interest cannot be a hobby

Pleasurable activity

Driven by curiosity

Hobbies may not always turn to be a source of income

An interest can become a source of employment and earning money

Do often or even regularly

Pursue sometimes

Do it for yourself

May involve others

Narrow area

Broader area as it includes hobby as well

  • In order to further clarify the issue let me state an example.


Take cooking and travelling for instance. If a person says cooking is his hobby while travelling is his interest, what would it mean to you?

Think, think. Let me answer, you see a person might have some free time and in order to relax and get pleasure he decides to cook something or explore a new cuisine. Daily after coming tired from office the act of ‘cooking’, be it for himself or family/ friends gives him moment of joy. This is hobby.

Talking about travelling, a person may be curious to know about different places, its culture and geography or he wants to experience the physical journey from one place to another. Now being interested means he does not daily travel; he does not daily explore new place nor does he daily sits in train, ship or airplane. But somedays in between his working hours he might search and gain knowledge about how, when and where to travel. This act which happens rarely is an interest.

Note: Mind you actual travelling and collecting pictures of different places/ maintain a scrap book are 2 different things. The latter is hobby while former is an interest.


Here are few more examples:

Hobbies- reading book, playing chess/ carom/ badminton/ any other game, swimming, collecting stamps/ pictures, painting, sketching, playing guitar/ any instrument, etc.

Interests- diving, mountain climbing, learning new software/ terms and phrases/ foreign language, sewing, driving, pottery, etc.

Hope the above provides a clear cut distinction between hobbies and interests.

Moving on to the next part of this article let me further elaborate the above in context of SSB interview and PIQ form.

SSB interview is a 5 day procedure conducted to assess the aspirants of Indian Armed Forces on various parameters. One of the procedures involved in SSB is the filling up of PIQ form.

PIQ is elaborated as Personal Information Questionnaire. It forms the base of your personality. The PIQ projects not only the candidate’s details but also his Officer Like Qualities.

There are various columns to be filled in PIQ form such as name, education, sports, co- curricular activities etc. My concern is to help you answer clearly when it comes to filling up the ‘hobby’ section.

Now that you know the difference between hobby and interests it will be much easier to fill this section accurately. For instance you can write dancing, playing game, cooking, painting, sketching, cycling as your hobby.

The Interview Officer, later during the interview, may question you on these answers. He may ask you which game do you play, what you paint etc.

An essential tip here is not to lie. Do not ever write false answers because the Officers are expert and will catch you in seconds. For example if you sleep in your free time then to put it as a hobby say that you like to relax yourself for the next task or for the upcoming activities as listed in your schedule.

With that I would like to end the article followed by an optimistic note: be it hobby or interests, allow yourself to enjoy life and experience moments of joy because without making yourself happy you cannot render happiness elsewhere