Sport versus game

by barbaragarn

What’s the difference?

I was thinking about the many Olympic sports and pondering the nature of sports versus games. Is it just in the amount of physical activity? Where do we draw the line?

Hockey is definitely a sport. I think figure skating is, too, and even “rhythmic gymnastics,” since people work up a sweat at it.

Curling…? Well, I’ve never done it, but anything played with BROOMS as part of the equipment seems somehow less “sporty.” And there certainly seems to be more shouting than physical activity.

What about shooting competitions? Is that a sport or a game? I’ve never handled guns, let alone competed with them, but target practice doesn’t seem… athletic.

Diving is a sport; you have to be in shape to do it, for all that it’s so quick and the competition relates to form, not speed or prowess.

Bowling–is it a sport or a game? I say game, but it’s one of the more “sporty” games, as opposed to, say, bridge, or Duck Duck Goose (“Duck Duck GREY DUCK” for you Minnesotans).

Hockey is definitely a sport. But what about other things on ice–broomball? (ANOTHER ice sport with a broom, jeez.)

I think for something to be a sport, it has to include more than normal physical activity–you have to sweat!–and players have to work at it to get better.

What do you think? What makes a sport a sport, and a game a game?