Definition of "Sport"
Sport is a major area of human interest and activity. A large part of our leisure, and newspaper and TV time is given over to it.
A pragmatic approach to defining "sport" is to look at the common usage of the term.
A sport can be operationally defined as an activity characteristically involving :
The excellence referred to above may be measured against previous benchmarks, time measurements, performance of the other team or participants, world records, etc..
- The exercise of a useful physical skill recreationally, i.e. for a purpose other than its practical application in daily life.
- Conforming to a set of rules for the activity while aiming to attain excellence.
Examples of skills which have become sports:
Physical sports use characteristics such as strength, stamina, speed, dexterity and other skills, other sports use more cerebral skills (see
- Gladiators in Rome fought and killed for the delectation of the audience, rather than to protect the Empire:
- Yachting is the travel across water for enjoyment or competition rather than e.g. for transport or commerce:
- Running is done on a course for a fixed length of time or distance, rather than simply to catch a bus.