Sport (British English) or sports (American English) includes all forms of competitive physical activity or games which, through casual or organised participation, aim to use, maintain or improve physical ability and skills while providing enjoyment to participants, and in some cases, entertainment for spectators. Hundreds of sports exist, from those between single contestants, through to those with hundreds of simultaneous participants, either in teams or competing as individuals. In certain sports such as racing, many contestants may compete, simultaneously or consecutively, with one winner; in others, the contest (a match) is between two sides, each attempting to exceed the other. Some sports allow a tie game; others provide tie-breaking methods to ensure one winner and one loser. A number of contests may be arranged in a tournament producing a champion. Many sports leagues make an annual champion by arranging games in a regular sports season, followed in some cases by playoffs.
Artifacts and structures suggest sport in China as early as 2000 BC. Gymnastics appears to have been popular in China’s ancient past. Monuments to the Pharaohs indicate that a number of sports, including swimming and fishing, were well-developed and regulated several thousands of years ago in ancient Egypt. Other Egyptian sports included javelin throwing, high jump, and wrestling. Ancient Persian sports such as the traditional Iranian martial art of Zourkhaneh had a close connection to warfare skills. Among other sports that originated in ancient Persia are polo and jousting.
Cheating In Sports
Match fixing and cheating
Key principles of sport include that the result should not be predetermined, and that both sides should have equal opportunity to win. Rules are in place to ensure fair play, but participants can break these rules in order to gain advantage.
Participants may cheat in order to unfairly increase their chance of winning, or in order to achieve other advantages such as financial gains. The widespread existence of gambling on the results of sports fixtures creates a motivation for match fixing, where a participant or participants deliberately work to ensure a given outcome rather than simply playing to win.
Violence in sports involves crossing the line between fair competition and intentional aggressive violence. Athletes, coaches, fans, and parents sometimes unleash violent behaviour on people or property, in misguided shows of loyalty, dominance, anger, or celebration. Rioting or hooliganism by fans in particular is a problem at some national and international sporting contests.