Table of Contents
Sports, and physical competitions are pursued by the goals and the challenges they bring. Sport is part of the past and present of all cultures, but each culture defines the sport. The most valuable reports clarify the relationship of sports to games, games, and competitions. “Playing”, wrote the German theorist Carl Diem, “is in itself a useless activity, the opposite of work”. People work because they have to; They play because they want to. The game is autotelic, meaning it has its own goals. It is voluntary and not forced.
No one can say when the sport started. Since it is impossible to imagine a time when children did not spontaneously participate in races or fights, it is clear that children have always incorporated sports into their games. Still, one can only speak of the emergence of sport as autotelic physical competitions for adults speculate. Hunters are depicted in prehistoric art, but it is unclear whether hunters pursued their prey in a desperate state of mind or with the joyous abandonment of athletes. However, from the rich literary and iconographic testimonies of all ancient civilizations. It is clear that hunting quickly became an end in itself, at least for kings and nobility. Archaeological evidence indicates that ball games were standard among ancient peoples as diverse as the Chinese and the Aztecs. If ball games were competitions rather than non-competitive ritual performances, like the Japanese game of kemari football, then they were sports in the strictest sense. It could not simply be a competition is evident from the testimonies of Greek and Roman antiquity, which indicate that ball games were mainly playful pastimes, as recommended for health by the doctor Greek Galen in the 2nd century AD.
African Traditional Sports
It is unlikely that the Islamic conquest of North Africa in the 7th century drastically changed the traditional sport in the region. As long as wars were fought with bows and arrows, archery competitions continued to demonstrate skill. The Prophet Muhammad specifically authorized horse racing, and geography dictated that men raced with camels as well as horses. Hunters also liked to ride horses.
Among the many, North African games were ta Kurt om el mag (“Pilgrim Mother’s Ball”), a Berber bat-and-ball competition eerily similar structure to baseball. Koura, the most played, looked like football (soccer).
Traditional Asian Sports
Like the advanced civilizations they belong to, traditional Asian sports are ancient and diverse. Competing has never been easier than it looks. From the Islamic Middle East to the Indian subcontinent via China and Japan, wrestlers, primarily but not exclusively male, have embodied and practiced the values of their cultures. Fighter strength has always been more than just a personal statement. More often than not, men who fought and fought found themselves engaged in a religious enterprise. For centuries, prayers, chants, and purification rituals have been an important aspect of hand-to-hand combat for Islamic fighters. It was not uncommon to combine the fighter’s skills with those of a mystical poet. The famous 14th-century Persian Pahlawan (ritual wrestler) Maḥmūd Khwārezmī was both.
Sport In The Ancient Mediterranean
The sport was undoubtedly prevalent in ancient Egypt, where pharaohs used their hunting skills, strength, and archery skills to demonstrate their ability to rule. In such depictions, however, pharaohs like Amenhotep II (r. 1426-1400 BC) never rivalled others, and there is reason to believe that their extraordinary achievements were of the fiction of scribes. Egyptians with fewer claims to divinity wrestled, jumped, and participated in ball games and stick fights. In paintings found in a Middle Kingdom (1938-c.1630 BC) tomb at Beni Hassan, there are studies of 406 pairs of wrestlers demonstrating their skills.