Posts Tagged ‘school sports’

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The Social Function of Sports

January 26, 2009
"My girls never quit."

The coach of the losing team was quoted as saying: "My girls never quit."

Some sociologists hold that because sports are a product of society, they can often reflect larger elements of the society that spawned them. Some believe particular sports teach important principles, rules, and values that form key life skills. For example, how to learn from defeat or encourage self-discipline and drive through the rewards of deserved success.

But such approaches may cause problems in society as well. Some have been argued that winning is stressed over lessons of self-improvement or social cooperation. In other words, how well you play the game takes a second seat to victory. An example of this might include a recent high school basketball game in Texas where a team won by a score of 100 to 0.

The coach of the wining team reportedly explained that forfeiting the game would not have helped the losing team, recalling the wining school had experienced a similar loss and benefited by the experience. Officials from the winning school apologized for the dramatic disparity in the score. The coach of the winning team disagreed with that decision. He was fired.

Do you have an opinion about this issue? If so, please select a topic below and respond to it:

Topics for Discussion
1) What do you think are some of the social purposes of sporting events?
2) Do you think competition is a good medium through which to teach life values? Why?
3) Do you think the score should have been “curved” or the game stopped at some point? Why?

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