Introduction of Sport in Ancient Greece and Rome
In ancient time around 338 B.C., physical education was influenced by the civilizations of Ancient Greece. All the cities, mainly Athens, put a high value on physical fitness and sport. The Greeks had an idea of a united mind, body, and spirit. With this idea the Greek education included intellectual and physical development. Thus the phrase “a sound mind in a sound body” came about. Gyms became a place where meeting and discussions took place as well as sports and fitness exercises. Wrestling, running, and jumping were the main instruction give to males. The Greeks then started to work on building their physiques. The Athenian Society was guided by a principle, arête, which means the pursuit of excellence. This encouraged everyone to strive for excellence.
To honor the gods, the Greeks held festivals where all of the athletes were to show off their physiques along with their athletic abilities. The most popular of all the festivals was the Olympic Games. The Olympic Games were held in honor of the chief god, Zeus. The Olympic Games started around the year 776 B.C. It is held every four years. Featured music, feasts, and sporting events lasted five days. The Olympic Games were so important that cities around that were in war postponed the war until after the games so that people could travel to watch and participate.
During the years 500- 27 B.C., Ancient Rome also considered physical activity to be very important. Unlike Greece where they showed off their bodies and abilities, Rome became physically fit and muscular for the military. The males were trained in archery, wrestling, riding, and fencing. Rome also took part in strength development so that they would be able to defend Rome.
After Rome defeated Greece, gyms were made open to everyone. No one was really interested in the gyms so no one used them. The Romans were more interested in professional sports and blood sports...