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"Sport is precious it shouldn't be abused by commercial interests". To what extent is this true in sport today?

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Introduction

"Sport is precious it shouldn't be abused by commercial interests". To what extent is this true in sport today? Over the last few decades sport has moved from solely amateur to a professional era. I will be writing an essay that will weigh up the arguments on both sides and come to a judgement as to what extent sport has been abused by commercial interests. I will also talk about how commercialisation has given to sport as well as increased participation, and the various steps taken to bring sport from the amateur era to the professional era. The word amateur comes from the Old French word for 'lover of' and this is clearly the main reason why people play amateur sport. Because they love the game that they play, as oppose to it being their job to play the game. Whereas, a professional sportsman is someone who gets paid to play sports, and often contracted to some sort of club or team. Professional sport has become more and more common, and one of the main reasons for this is because of commercialisation. ...read more.

Middle

Many would argue that Roman Abramovich being able to buy Chelsea Football Club for that amount of money is wrong and essentially just turned Chelsea into a super-team, with little to none competition, and this would be fine if Chelsea had earned their way to the top by winning matches but they didn't so essentially the game can be unfair because of commercial interests in sport. Another point is that, with extreme commercialisation as we can see in sports such as American Football, Soccer, and NBA Basketball, the sport becomes essentially a battle of the sponsors. We associate different players with different brands, and younger grass roots level players idolise these players, and to all intents and purposes get brainwashed by this branding. This is probably the main reason why different firms sponsor players, to get a financial return from the younger players who play the game at an amateur level. In the Olympic Games, athletes are not allowed to wear sponsored items of clothing; however this makes little difference to the companies who sponsor the players. ...read more.

Conclusion

In conclusion I think that perhaps there are some aspects that make commercialisation a bad thing in sport, but I think that the good that comes out of it by far outweighs the bad. I think that sport is precious, but will not be spoiled by commercial interests. Contrary to this, I think that commercialisation makes sport appear more of an attractive career and therefore t attracts a larger amount of people to play professionally. And I think that the quality of athletes has greatly increased due to the incentives that sponsorships bring about. There could be an argument to say that this increased competition has spoiled sport, because it does incite cheating in sport in order to win. Again, using the 100m sprint final as an example. The margin for error in this race is so small, and the huge difference between the prize for second place and first place makes the race so much more competitive, that cheating is becoming more and more common. So perhaps to some extent we could say that the increased financial gain from being a professional athlete has spoiled sport to some extent. ...read more.

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