The Definition of Sport
“Sport” has two separate meanings, with the first meaning commonly used in North America while the second is more commonly used in Europe. “Sport” has sometimes been used to describe non-sport events and activities, such as business, non-profit organization, etc. In British English “sport” means played competitively (usually with a ball), usually with teams and usually organized by a team owner, coach, etc., Sport can also mean a game of skill (such as basketball) or a contest to show a horse’s superiority over another in a dressage event.
“Sport” can be used as an informal definition, to describe any structured activity that people engage in for recreation or to compete in. “isure” is used in much the same way. ” recreational” is much more narrow than “sport.” It refers to activities done for pleasure, recreation or otherwise, such as games, dancing, hiking, fishing, swimming, etc. The use of “sport” as an informal definition has become more common in North America and some other parts of the world where most people engage in contact sports such as soccer, rugby, golf, hockey, softball and others.
However, in many parts of the world sport is considered a specific activity. For example, in the United States, ice fishing is considered a sport, as is snowmobiling. Some sports may be practiced regularly, while others may only be practiced on an irregular basis. Some may be played year round in places like Canada, where winter sports are very popular. Others, however, may only be played in the summer months, and the season may only last a few weeks.
“Sporting activity” is the broader term that is used to describe any game or sport that involves contact with another person or object. The activities may include bicycling, field hockey, ice hockey, golf, rugby, tennis, swimming, running, track and field, sailing or motorcycling. The term “sport” can also be used in describing non-contact games such as skill games, musical theater or dance. However, the term sport is most commonly associated with contact sports.
In the United States, many children participate in non-contact sports because it is less expensive than organized sports. But playing sport does not necessarily mean that a child is playing a sport. Many children may engage in play acting, as an adult would do, or in modeling or art. Children who engage in these types of activities may be considered sporty, but not necessarily sporty. The activities could be considered part of the arts or creative hobbies category.
The United States Department of Education defines sport as any physical activity that provides a contest and may be supervised by an appointed official. The sport could be competitive or non-competitive. It may involve physical contacts between the players or involve only the participants. Some examples of sport activities are wrestling, basketball, baseball, soccer, cheerleading, gymnastics, motor racing, fencing, track and field and ice skating. Some other examples of non-sport activities are library work, outdoor activities, wilderness survival, riding and hunting.