The Nature of Sports


The normative significance of unwritten rules of a game is acknowledged by the conventionalists. Such people argue that rules alone cannot provide sufficient guidance for all eventualities that may occur during a game. Accordingly, unwritten rules of a game supplement formal rules, thereby improving their efficiency. As a result, they emphasize the value of cooperation and mutualism among players. Here are the main arguments in favor of a normative account of sports.

From ancient Greece, philosophers have pondered the nature of sport. Aristotle and Plato saw sport as a key part of education, arguing that a well-educated Greek must cultivate a harmony between body and mind. Medieval Europeans and Romans also pondered the role of sports in human culture. They understood them as tools to prepare warriors. Some games, such as the race, involve dozens or even hundreds of competitors at a time.

Some people argue that the aesthetic qualities of sport can be ascribed to art. Others dispute this idea, but it has been supported by philosophers such as Spencer K. Wertz, Hans Ulrich Gumbretch, and Wolfgang Welsch. The aesthetic qualities of sport have attracted some philosophers to study them. But they are also true of many forms of art and music, including dance, theater, and painting. The aesthetic qualities of sport are so widespread that the broader public should begin to recognize and value them.

One of the primary goals of a sport is to create a competitive environment. Games and sports involve physical competition and usually end in a winner and a loser. This instills competitiveness in individuals. While all games and sports are considered games, some types of sport are not. They can, however, be considered sports. There are many other types of games and sports that do not qualify as such. However, the basic concept is the same.