Sports can be broadly defined as any physical activity which involves a level of competitive activity, like basketball or netball. Many forms of motorized sports and some games are also known as sports. An athlete in a particular sport is sometimes also called a sportsperson. There are various recognized sports competitions around the world and they include athletic events like wrestling, swimming, gymnastics, track running, table tennis, swimming, motor-bicycle racing, ice skating and sailing.
Most sports involve muscular exertion and physical strength. Martial arts, for instance, requires both strength and dexterity. Cricket is also a popular form of sports for many people, although it requires both dexterity and physical strength. Tennis and golf are two more popular sports which require large amounts of physical exertion. Skateboarding is yet another example of a sport that requires a lot of strength and skill.
Most sports are competitive, with the winner usually being the player who can outlast and outwit his or her opponents. It is usual for competitors to wear uniforms that give away their distinctive characteristics – arms, legs, hands, face etc. However, not all sports can be characterized with this extent. For instance, while surfing involves a lot of skill and physical ability, the spectators only see the person’s surfboard.
Today, there are a great many sports that we can participate in and watch on television. Many people participate in indoor activities like cycling, jogging, swimming, tennis and horseback riding. In the modern age, there are even sports that require no special outfit, but just ordinary clothes.
One of the oldest sports that we have recorded is autotelic. Autotelic is nothing more than a form of physical contest that began around 1000 B.C. The competitions in early times were much more intense than they are today, and included very minute movements, which required great endurance and muscular strength. This eventually became a popular sport for aristocratic Romans and Greeks and eventually replaced hunting and wrestling as the most popular sports of the time. The word “autotelic” is derived from the Greek word “autos” meaning “of the race”.
Modern sports also include gladiator events, which have been around for over three thousand years. These chariot races involve teams of at least four players wearing differently designed costumes, with each player racing to reach the center of a circle in the shortest possible time. Chariot racing started as a game of honor among family members, similar to polo, and has since become a highly theatrical event. Today, chariot races are still a popular spectator sport. Another popular type of modern sport is track and field, which involve the use of speed and athletic ability for a variety of competitions. Track and field events are particularly popular amongst children.