ARE SPORTS JUST A SOURCE OF DIVERSION?
If you’re a crazy sports fan like me, you’ll understand what I mean when I say that my husband gave me that look last Sunday evening.
You know- the look that says you’ve been spending waaaaay too much time with sports today.
So, I decided to brush it off, but then I took a look around. On the couch next to me was the worn-out remote control that I used to jump between any interesting sport I could get my hands on. The battery from my laptop was burning a hole in my thighs as I fiddled with my sports blog for hours. And, my cell phone was buzzing at me indicating the battery was giving up from my constant checking of sports twitter feeds.
Am I obsessed? Maybe so, but I can justify it. Can’t I??
Merriam Webster’s definition of a sport is: “source of diversion” or “recreation”. Well, that implies any type of diversion could be categorized as a sport. Like if I sat at the counter of my local java café and cruised the internet on my laptop, wouldn’t that be considered a source of diversion or recreation and thus, a sport?
Hmm, I guess that makes my love for viewing professional sports seem very trivial.
And, then I found another definition of a sport at thefreedictionary.com: “An activity involving physical exertion and skill that is governed by a set of rules or customs and often undertaken competitively.” So, a professional sport could really be defined as a competitive diversion in which the participants get paid? Does that mean I am throwing away my entire Sunday on watching wealthy people compete for recreation? There must be more to it than that??
SportAccord, the preeminent umbrella for international sports federations (including FIFA & the International Olympic Committee), defines sport on its website for all new membership applications as follows: “Should include an element of competition; should not rely on any element of ‘luck’ specifically integrated into the sport; should not be judged to pose an undue risk to the health and safety of its athletes or participants; should in no way be harmful to any living creature; and should not rely on equipment that is provided by a single supplier.”
While that definition does attempt to refine a more general interpretation of the word “sport”, it doesn’t help me validate all the time I spend watching sports. In fact, it just makes me plain confused. Doesn’t every sport involve some kind of luck, i.e. flipping of a coin, the ball bouncing a certain way, etc? Isn’t every sport even slightly “harmful”? And, what do suppliers have anything to do with it?
Well, watching sports may seem like a waste of time to others who just don’t get. Happily, this girl does and I’m not afraid to admit it!
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