Back when my sister was a cheerleader, I remember a t-shirt one of her friends was wearing that read: “If cheerleading was easy they’d call it football.” That quote was one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever read in my life and I’ll explain. There are certain things that make a “sport” a “sport” and cheerleading, track, and golf are simply not sports. Sorry to disappoint you. I ran track in high school and love playing golf as well, so don’t think I’m just some hater.
My high school baseball coach and English teacher William Porter once said, “In order for something to be a sport it must have offense and defense.” I strongly believe Mr. Porter to this day. If it’s only offense (Example: Golf), it’s not a sport. Let’s take a look at REAL sports first and then we’ll break down the “activities/hobbies.”
Some people will call them “The Four Major Sports:” Baseball, Football, Basketball, and Ice Hockey. The reason why they’re called this is because they have existed the longest and are the most exciting to watch. All of them involve the two main components that make up a sport: (1) Offense, and (2) Defense. Now you might say, “Well Sull, would you consider ping-pong more of a sport then PGA?” I’d answer you “Yes!” You may find that surprising as Professional Golfers who are on the PGA Tour make millions and I can go play ping-pong right now outside my office vs. a coworker, but it’s true. Professional Golfers and people who do Track & Field may appear to be great athletes, but what are they really doing? Golfers just stand over a ball and have great hand/eye coordination skills. After hitting the ball, they walk to their ball (or hop in a cart) and do the same thing again and again until the ball is in the hole. You think that’s a sport? Catch my drift?
Track & Field is a little different though because you involve competition with others at the same time. What are Track & Field people really doing though? Exercising? Working out? If I go run on a treadmill at the gym beside 20 other people, am I playing a sport? That’s another thing. You don’t “PLAY” Track & Field, you run it or compete in it. With a real sport, you’ll be able to say: “I play (insert sport here).” The same thing goes for Cross-Country, Crew, Archery, Fishing, Skateboarding, etc… They’re just hobbies/activities. Now people call them “sports,” but they’re not. Great example right here. ListOfSports.net – Out of this list, how many are really sports?
Out of the 29 “sports” they listed (uncategotized doesn’t count), I would only count 9 of them as actual sports. Just because a Professional Golfer or X-Games Snowboarder isn’t playing a “Sport,” that doesn’t mean they’re not athletic or an athlete. Tiger Woods would (probably) still beat me in a real sport, like basketball or soccer. This isn’t the case with a lot of professionals though. Professional bowlers aren’t athletes. NASCAR drivers are definitely not athletes, but they’re still on “SPORTS Center.”
This brings me to my next point. I have no problem with golf, NASCAR, swimming, bowling, or any of those activities being on ESPN because they’re still forms of entertainment even though they’re not sports. The one thing that really annoys me on Sporting Networks is WPT (World Poker Tour). Poker is the farthest thing from a sport and it’s promoted on ESPN everyday (when they have nothing else to air). The thing about poker is it’s still competitive and entertaining (if you’re into gambling). ESPN and Sports Networks clearly just air entertainment even if they’re not technically “sports.”
If you’ve read the article this far, you clearly have to have an opinion on the matter. Click the comment section below and let me know if you agree or disagree that a “sport” needs to have both offense and defense. Cheers!
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