Sports play a critical role in many people’s lives. It is an activity that can help you improve your health, build social skills and develop a sense of self-worth.
Athletes have a wide range of feelings while playing and competing in sports, including anticipation, anxiety, excitement, awe, joy and pride. Some feelings are a normal part of the experience, while others reflect their perception of other people’s expectations and evaluations.
In addition to the physical aspect of sports, there is also an emotional component that athletes are aware of and consciously work to manage. Athletes often feel pressured to perform well in competition and to avoid letting their emotions get the best of them.
Whether it is through a team sport, individual competition or simply watching the game on television, sports are an important way for people to socialize. This socialization can be facilitated by parents, older siblings, peers, teachers, coaches and elite athletes.
As with other aspects of social life, the emergence and diffusion of sports is characterized by multidirectional movement of people, practices, customs, and ideas that reflect shifting power balances. As a result, Western sports, which have been dominated to an overwhelming degree by Europe and North America, are often reinterpreted and maintained on a global scale by non-Western cultures.
In addition, the emergence of modern sports has shaped international politics and economics. It has been a source of global political power in the form of the world sports powers–the United States, Russia, western Europe and Australia–and of geopolitical influence in non-Western regions, especially in Asia.