Sociology, Factors, And Social Perspectives On Sports

1530 Words 7 Pages
Sociologists define sport as a set of competitive activities, within a set of established rules, and in which physical performance determines winners and losers. Sports are a huge part of society and athletes in general are people who have been looked up to and admired for centuries. There are many sociological components when it comes to sports and three that sociologists have covered thoroughly are the topics of the sociological perspectives on sports, social influences on how athletes are viewed by others and themselves, and gender differences in sports.
The Perspectives on Sports
According to Cenegage Advantage: Sociology, The three main sports perspective groups are the functionalists, conflict theorists and the symbolic interactionists.
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The socio-emotional aspect of sports pertains to the way in which one’s mental state is effected by a sport in terms of stress management and production of community. The next function, socialization, pertains to the values instilled in individuals through sports such as self control, discipline, achievement, and teamwork. This function fails to identify the negative effects of participation in sports which are commonly ignored by most such as the rising cost of sports, lack of acceptance, injury, cheating, pressure to preform, and exclusion. Integration refers to the smooth integration of a person and their identification with a group or team, or in other words how an individual responds/reacts within the group environment. The political function follows the same theme as integration, only it is applied to the nation as a whole as opposed to just an individual. Political functions pertain to the role of sport in creating a national identity or producing a national pride throughout a generation. The social mobility function relates to the degree to which sports provide those showing superior skill levels in their sport to attain a higher social status and acquire things such as wealth, prestige, and notoriety. Some of the repercussions of this function are the greed, lust, cheating, and envy that can result from one’s …show more content…
Zimmerman, Gender is a socially constructed idea that people then strive to achieve. They said that gender was, “ an achieved status: that which is constructed through psychological, cultural, and social means” This essentially means that each individual often times continually attempts to achieve a higher status of his or her gender. Society tends to focus on traditional gender roles where men are strong, competitive, determined, and other characteristics of this nature, whereas women are supposed to be soft, gentle, kind, and others characteristics of this nature. These essential roles have been and are continually being shaped, but for the most part there are the basis for the expect role men and women are expected to play. These roles have greatly influenced the construction of sports. When sports began over 3,000 years ago and even somewhat today, they have been viewed as masculine activities. Gender discrimination has also occurred since the beginning of sports, and the first case of this occurred when formal sports were first introduced in ancient Greece. This event would come to be known as the first “Olympics.” During the first Olympics, men competed in chariot races, wrestling, javeline-throwing, and other sports of that nature while they were cheered on by large rows of people. Women were excluded from these games and

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