Why Golf Is a Sport Essay
Why Golf Is a Sport
A matter of opinion has separated a variety of sports enthusiasts apart, due to the ongoing debate of whether golf is a sport or simply a skill. Famed golfer Arnold Palmer declared, “Golf is deceptively simple and endlessly complicated; it satisfies the soul and frustrates the intellect. It is at the same time rewarding and maddening – and it is without a doubt the greatest game mankind has ever invented. (ThinkQuest. com)” These words state what every athlete experiences and feels when he/she is turning a double play, making the game winning three point shot, or throwing a hail mary pass for a touchdown.
Golfers are athletes too, they train for that big moment just like any other athlete, but they do it individually and gain the glory for themselves. Golf has increasingly become known not as a sport, but as a skill, which is a huge misconception that I intend to set the facts straight. The definition of a sport is narrowly defined, and to one its own opinion, but Golf is a competition just like every other sport, winning is its pinnacle. Golf requires the number one characteristic that is vital to all sports – hand-eye coordination. These men and women use their athletic ability to reach the top of their game.
Golf takes sports to a different level and is played on its own terms. To each his own opinion, but why has the definition of “a sport” being termed as so narrowly? The NCAA defines a sport as: An institutional activity involving physical exertion with the purpose of competition versus other teams or individuals within a collegiate competition structure. Furthermore, sport includes regularly scheduled team and/or individual, head-to-head competition (at least five) within a defined competitive season(s); and standardized rules with rating/scoring systems ratified by official regulatory agencies and governing bodies.
Baseball, basketball, football, hockey, and even golf display these qualities of what is defined as a sport. There has been a considerable amount of people who tend to disclose golf as a sport, only a skill or activity. Yet, many people object the physical exertion aspect with golf, that it does not require any. These objectors who say golf should not be included in that defined group are ignorant to athletics and its regulations. My definition of a sport is a competition that involves athletes who play to win within a certain structure of rules and regulations.
Anyone can be an athlete; they do not have to be good to play a sport, as long as they try with some effort. A sport requires certain qualities of an individual too that it can not be without. Hand-eye coordination is vital to every sport out there. A basketball player has to shoot the ball into the hoop, a football player has to throw the ball to an open receiver, a baseball player has to swing a bat to hit a 95 mile per hour fastball, and golfers have to swing their club and hit a tiny ball a couple hundred yards. It is the number one aspect that is required in all sports. Although it is common to associate sports with many other qualities.
The “manly” qualities of other sports such as cheerleaders and fights usually are not included in golf, some figure because it is missing these qualities, that it should not even be considered a sport. “Cheerleaders are important to sports. They keep the crowd excited; they keep the participants enthused about winning; and they give you something else to look at when the action on the field of play grinds to a halt. With golf there’s not a lot of action to begin with. (Irvin)” Although golf is missing the appendages that invigorate other sports with such audacity, the onlookers respect their golfers need for silence and concentration.
It is a sport which requires a massive amount of concentration, just like any other sport. Irvin states his idea that cheerleaders are important to sports, when in fact; cheerleading has nothing to do at all with the style of play. He is right that they keep the crowd excited, but that is the only reason why they are there, they do not play, they yell and dance. It makes me wonder why one would think that Golf needs to have cheerleaders to keep the crowd excited when the golfers need a massive amount of concentration.
Yet regular sports fans forget that each sport is different, and that is what makes them stand out and appeal to others. Golf does not appeal to some, but a lot of people play the sport religiously, reason being – one does not have to be the typical in shape athlete that most are. Golfers are athletes too, and train to be good ones. Swinging a club and hitting a ball three hundred plus yards requires muscle strength in the torso and upper body. Golfers are just the kind of athletes who do not need to negotiate long-term big money contracts, and scratch themselves while being interviewed after play is over (Lowe).
Golf is not a team sport either; it is an individual sport and the glory is captured for them, and they take pride and honor after an amazing feat as any athlete would. The honor and competitiveness of this sport has trickled down to the much supportive fan base. After exposing the truths and presenting evidence about one of the greatest sports ever to be played, we can no longer dispute golf as just a skill or activity, but declare Golf a real sport. It is important to sports enthusiasts everywhere that they have to look beyond the typical definition of a sport and expand their minds.
Golfers are athletes too, playing for the top prize every time they step onto the course. Golf is gaining popularity by the second, no longer can it be said to be “not a real sport”. Golf justifies what every sport should be, the way it is played, the professional maturity that every golfer shows, and competition. Merriam Webster defines a sport as 1): physical activity engaged in for pleasure (2): a particular activity (as an athletic game) so engaged in. Golf qualifies as a sport according to this definition and until it is changed, it will remain one of the legendary sports to play.
University/College: University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 1 June 2017
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