Since the time the human being started living as purposive living beings, they have practiced the art of sporting as cultural or social event. It is believed that sporting has immensely helped the human beings to become highly social and master the nature and the environment around them. Looking back at the history of sport can tell us a lot about the social changes that have occurred in humans and also the spirit of sport itself. Sport has helped humans to evolve new skills, new exercises that have impacted positively on their body and minds.
Since the ancient times, people have been practicing sports such as wrestling and archery all over the world. Organized and synchronized sports were there since the time of the ancient Olympics, which are still practiced today. Although the sporting history is different in different civilizations, there is one thing in common – entertainment and recreation.
Egyptology and monument studies have shown that the Pharaohs had developed regulated sports of a wide range some several thousand years back. Among all these sports, swimming and fishing was significant in ancient Egypt since the civilization thrived on the banks of the great Nile. The other sports that were also practiced were wrestling, high jumping and javelin throwing. By studying these sports, we can at least guess a little about their lifestyles at that time.
Studies of different artifacts and ancient structures have shown that the Chinese people used to perform many activities, which could be categorized as sports dating back to 2000 B.C. Among these sports, Gymnastics have been very a popular sport. Gymnastics are still famous in China and the Chinese carry the legacy and in today’s world they are internationally recognized acrobats. The history of the Chinese people is very closely related to sports and there is a Sports Museum in Beijing that displays China’s sports and sports history.
Since the ancient times, the Greeks were engaged in aggressive sports that included wrestling, boxing, and javelin and discuss throwing and chariot racing. These sporting habits suggest that Greece had a very influential military culture. All the sporting competitions that the Greeks used to practice had been written in the Iliad, which is considered as one of the most significant books related to the archaic Greek Culture. The ancient Olympics used to be held once in four years. The victories in these games were much talked about and the winners used to be rewarded with olive branches. The Olympics were held not only as mere a sporting event; they meant cultural and artistic diversity, personal brilliance and also an exhibition of the architectural wonders.
Sporting in the modern world:
Britain had a vast influence in today’s sporting world, primarily as a result of their global colonization. British sports and sporting regulation began spreading all over the world around the late 1800s and the early 1900s. Out of all the sports the major impact was on football. The British had also popularized cricket in other parts of the world, such as India, South Africa and Australia, which were then part of the British Empire. Even the British had major contribution on the rediscovery of the Olympic Games.
While football and cricket was growing in popularity in the British colonized regions, baseball and American football was becoming popular in the United States. Baseball had become an established and popular sport in the north east of the US and the official rules were regulated in the 1840s. At the same time, American football was becoming widespread in the southeast United States. The industrial revolution had immensely helped in the popularity of these spectator sports. With the arrival of the media and communication, professionalism had become customary. This boosted the popularity of sports further all over the world and people not only started sporting for pleasure, they started sporting for career as well.