It’s no secret that sports have a huge impact on our culture. Even people who don’t play or watch sports may know the names of key players, and may even take pride in an Olympic medal. Sports provide us with a common story, and a shared goal. It’s not surprising that these activities are marketed around the world.
Newspapers and magazines have long written about sports, but the rise of sports journalism has changed the way sports are covered. There is a vast literature available about sports, including biographical and historical works. A growing body of sports writing includes biographies of famous athletes, reflections on the sport, and various coaching manuals.
While some aspects of the aesthetic element of sports survive, the majority of sports focus on the quantification of achievement. One interesting transition from the Renaissance era to the modern age can be seen in the semantic shift of the word “measure.” Whereas “measure” once referred to a sense of balance and proportion, it has come to mean numerical measurements. As a result, sports have become more scientifically oriented. In this way, they are more social and more accessible than ever.
Despite the globalisation of sports, some countries are more competitive than others. The Soviet Union outcompeted many Western nations for a while, but the West eventually surpassed them. Eventually, major Western sporting nations began to create state-sponsored programs. During this time, the sports world became more commercialized, and athletes from poor countries were drawn to more affluent nations.