Updated: Sep 26, 2018
When thinking about social gatherings, some of the first things that come to mind are school, church, or even family events, but biggest social gatherings that exist are sporting events. The largest gathering spaces are the stadiums and arenas where people come together and support their team. Sports has an incredible unifying effect that makes people into a community. In a lot of areas, you cannot separate society from their teams. The experiences that people have attending sporting events or being a part of a team are incredibly significant. That is what drives people to fly their team flag, put a sticker on their car, or don their colors. People raise their family accordingly and it is a part of their culture. It goes beyond just impacting individual families.
Having a sports team can also impact the economy of a community. It involves the media coverage that a team can receive and how people religiously follow their team, even from home. Sports and physical activity is part of our education growing up. Sport and society are interrelated because they impact one another in many ways. Participating in team sports is the ideal way to teach young kids how to be productive, successful, happy adults. When they do that, it has an impact on society.
Not only does it prepare people for success, the world of sports can be viewed as a microcosm of greater society. Many of the major issues that are troubling today are also represented in the culture of sports. A lot of athletes find that the field or the court is the one place where they can escape it all, but others are not so lucky. There are still people out there who devalue those of a different ethnicity or gender, especially when it comes to sport. Athletes are using their power and recognition to make a difference in society because they are part of our communities, as well. You cannot separate them from their communities just like sport does not exist in a vacuum outside of the greater society. They will be forever linked.
Goals and Purposes of Sport
1.) Learning social skills
2.) Developing physical skills
3.) Learning the importance of an active lifestyle
4.) Learning how to be a good teammate
5.) Having fun
6.) Working hard
7.) Believing in yourself
8.) Believing in others
9.) Helping people come together and work toward a common goal
10.) Establishing a healthy competitive attitude
11.) The benefits of being organized
12.) Learning mental toughness to be persistent when competition is difficult
13.) Developing resilience to bounce back from a setback
14.) Building lifelong relationships
15.) Learning to be humble in victory
16.) Learning to be gracious in defeat
17.) The ability to take direction from others
18.) Learning to accept the responsibility of their participation and finish what they started
19.) Learning to be a good leader
Coakley, Jay J. Sports in society: Issues and controversies. Twelfth ed., New York, NY, McGraw-Hill Education, 2017.