Sportsmanship: Personal Life and Sports

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Sportsmanship is the character, practice, or skill of a person involved in sports.

This includes the participant, the parents, the coaches, and all spectators. Sportsmanlike

conduct includes fairness, courtesy, learning to be a good loser, being competitive

without rude behavior, or experiencing any ill feelings toward the opponent.

Too often in any sporting event, the purpose of the sport is forgotten. Winning

has become overwhelmingly important to the adults involved. This attitude is

inflicted on the youth. People of all ages should be allowed to fully embrace the

challenge and fun of playing sports. Teaching, coaching, motivating, and winning

are fine as long as the reason for the sport or activity is prioritized.

The attitudes of athletes are instilled in them at a very young age. They reflect the

motivation and goals of their parents, who sometimes push them into sports they

would not normally choose for themselves. Play is essential in growth and develop-

ment. Children who play sports with other children tend to socialize and adjust

better as adults.

Healthy competition provides a natural, emotional outlet for children, but should

not be forced or overemphasized. Competition should be kept friendly with the

emphasis on participation rather than the outcome of the event. Parents should not

pressure the child to excel, regardless of his abilities, because this takes away the fun

of the sport, adds undo pressure on the participant, and produces unsportsmanlike


Sportsmanship is participating in a sport, rather than performing, and realizing how

you play the game is more important than winning. Too many coaches and parents

tend to forget the reason for sports for children. They get caught up in the excitement

and competitiveness. Winning is the ultimate goal, at all costs. The...
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