Sport and Aggressive Behavior

Topics: Aggression, Anger, Violence Pages: 7 (2578 words) Published: December 11, 2001
Sports and Aggressive Behavior

Sport and aggressive behavior, Do sports create aggressive behavior, or simply attract people who are already aggressive? Aggression and sport have gone together as long as sports have been around, be it the players themselves, to the parents, coaches, or spectators, they just seem to be an inseparable part of each other. The term violence is defined as physical assault based on total disregard for the well being of self and others, or the intent to injure another person (2. Coakley). Intimidation usually does not cause physical harm, but often is designed to produce psychological consequences, enabling one person to physically over power or dominate another. These statements as defined by the author, Jay J. Coakley, is what people today have made a must part on sport. Pleasure and participation sports absolutely cannot be grouped with power and performance sports when in relation to aggression. Pleasure sports are simply played for pleasure. Score is usually not kept. The athletes participating are usually on occasion doing it for fun and exercise. A majority of athletes who have been playing sports since they were little, have probably been pounded into their heads that to be successful in sport, you need to be aggressive, and at some times, unnecessary. Also that to get what you want, you have to go at it with all force. Not that this is wrong but, this attitude in today's society has been a major problem factor to the athletes when they get older, to get into trouble with the law. Those long-term effects of so-called discipline, patterns develop these destructive behaviors. (9. Montague) Although some people are still in belief that aggressive behaviors in all forms are grounded into instincts, but they also relate these actions to sports. Their parents played, who were known for their aggressive behavior, so the child feels that they have to live up to that expectation.( 6. Storr) Athletes do have to be aggressive to a point, so that the team can form a strategy to win. There is also a limit to aggression when it turns into violence. People might say that it's not aggression or violence, its just adrenaline pumping. Adrenaline isn't even similar to violence. Aggression, maybe, but nothing that would be harmful to anyone else. This might be a factor to why contact sports are so popular. For example, football, hockey, rugby, wrestling, and boxing. Contrary to predictions of instinct theory, several studies show that contact sports exist and thrive in the same societies that have high rates of aggression and violence. Unfortunately, another belief is that contact sports teach discipline, self-respect, and self-defense. (8. May) Contact sports aren't a positive way to teach these things. Being physically tough helps, but it also needs to be left on the field when the game is over. This can also lead to the abuse of family, girlfriends, boyfriends, friends, and any other person who gets in their "way", because athletes use these sports as a way to get their aggression and angers out. ( 10. Hauser, Powers, Noam) Other's might argue that it's skill, and not in the least way violent. Although we really can't give a straight and to the point answer to the question "Is aggression an Instinct?" We can say that in man, as in other animals, there exists a physiological mechanism, when stimulated; it raises both subjective feelings of anger and to physical changes, which relate to fighting. This is easily set off, and like other emotional responses, it is very stereotyped, and instinctive. Just like one person is like a very angry person; they resemble one another at the psychological level. The way in which humans adapt to and control their feelings of rage. ( 5. Toch) The mechanisms in which these body changes, the functions that come about is still completely misunderstood. ( 5. Toch) Experiments from animal's show that it appears that there is a small area from the base of the brain in which...

Bibliography: 1. Aggression and Violence, social interactionists perspectives. , Richard B. Felson and James T. Tedeschi 1993
2. Sport in Society, Issues and Controversies 6th edition, Jay J. Coakley 1998
3. Anger, Madness, and the Daimaonic; the pyschologists genesis of Violence, evil and creativitiy. Stephen A. Diamond 1996
4. A History of Aggression Freud, Paul E. Stepansky 1977
5. Violent Men; an inquiry into the pychology of violence, Hans Toch 1969
6. Human Aggression, Anthony Storr 1968
7. The Creation of Deviance, Interpersonal and organized determinants, Richard Hawkins, Gary Fredman, 1975
8. Power and Innocence, Rollo May 1972
9. Man and Aggression, Ashley Montague 1968
10. Adolescents and their Families, Paths of Ego Development, Stuart T. Hauser, Sally I. Powers, Gil G. Noam 1991
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