Sports (or athletic sports) is any form of physical activity that, through organised or casual competitive involvement, attempt to use, develop or enhance physical skill and/or ability while giving recreation to participants, and sometimes, spectators. In most professional sporting competitions, the competition sportsmanship and commitment are often the benchmark against which the outcome of a game is measured. However, there are many different forms and variations of sports and each requires its own particular set of skills and qualities in order to be successfully played. Some sports are competitive and involve competitors from around the world, whereas others, such as ice skating, are generally played by a single competing team or in an amateur arena.
There are numerous different categories of sports and activities, but perhaps the most well known and prevalent is organised sports. These include organised sports like football, rugby, Australian rules football (AFL) and lacrosse; recreational sports like swimming, mountain climbing, kayaking, cycling, horse riding, golf, tennis and basketball; and sports that do not necessarily require high levels of skill, athleticism or commitment, including ice hockey, swimming, basketball and softball. Other less popular categories of organized sports include beach, park and water sports (which may include surfing, snorkelling, scuba diving and surfing); gymnastics (which includes tumbling and cheerleading); skating; bowling; field hockey; baseball; and wrestling. All of these categories can be competitive or non-competitive, although some may take more form than action. In the United States, for example, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) governs over amateur athletics and other minor competitive athletics, while the National Soccer Sports Association (NPSA) oversees the professional game of soccer.
There are a number of different ways in which to play any of these sports, and the equipment used ranges from simple sneakers with special cleats to specially designed equipment for enhanced balance and performance. Sports also cover a range of physical activities, including aerobics, yoga, dance, martial arts, fitness and stretching. While the list of modern sports is long and varied, they all have one thing in common: the participants need to move their body in ways that their forebears could never have dreamed. Whether you are looking for something a little further out of the ordinary or simply want to find a way to get your heart pumping, there is a sport for you.