History Of Sport


After 1800's

Public schools

Designed around AS Edexcell spec for PE

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Sport Before 1800's

Need to know:

  • Role of the Church
  • Importance of Holy Days
  • Characteristics of Pre-Industrial Sport
  • Why Sport Was Occasional
  • Prizes and Recreation
  • Need for Combat Sports
  • Social Background of Some Activities
  • Characteristics of Upper-class Recreation
  • Characteristics of Lower-class Recreation
  • Lower-class Games and Society
  • Functioning Without Rules
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Role of the Church

  • Holy days- gave time off for sport
  • Church land used for sport
  • Social Meeting place
  • Supporting games
  • Church offering prize
  • Limited violence
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Importance of Holy Days

  • Only day free, leisure time
  • Led off steam
  • Team challenges, Social
  • A lot of people could play
  • Community get together
  • Prizes
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Characteristics of pre- industrial sport


  • Localised
  • Un-coded
  • Cruel
  • Courtly
  • Rural
  • Occasional
  • Wagering (gambling)
  • Mob games
  • Male dominated
  • Basic equipment
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Why sport was occasional

  • Agricultural seasons
  • Couldn’t play much in the summer, due to crops
  • Restrictions playing on Sunday, control of the church
  • Church/ holy days only time for recreation, 13 in a year
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Prizes and recreation

  • Money
  • Status
  • Respect
  • Functional prizes- hats, clothes ect...
  • Amour
  • Social link to upper class
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Need for Combat sports

  • War preparation
  • Compulsory archery practice
  • Traditional use of wrestling
  • Need for defensive skills
  • Betting and wagering
  • Reflecting a violence society
  • Part of education
  • Survival skills
  • Chivalric code
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Social Background of some activities


  • Lower-class/ peasants
  • Large number taking part
  • Community gatherings
  • Upper-class provided prizes


  • Upper-class
  • Wealth requires, for a horse and equipment
  • Held on closed grounds, spectators
  • Audience upper-class, price of tickets
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Characteristics of Upper-class recreation

  • Upper-class had more access, equipment, facilities ect...
  • Amount of leisure time, Upper had more
  • Differences in training needs, upper= knight, lower= footman
  • Use of horse as a means of transport
  • Non contact, no violence
  • Complex rules and scoring, need to be educated
  • Restricted access
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Lower-class games and society

  • Violent- for war
  • No transport- Local
  • No education- Could understand, write rules
  • Limited time off- played on holy days
  • Lack on  money- lack of equipment
  • Church control most aspects of life
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Functioning without rules

  • Most were not educated so no rules could be written or read
  • Rules were spread from word of mouth
  • Games were local so no need for a national standardised ruling
  • They used natural boundaries, borders, river ect...
  • Size differed so they altered it the fit that
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Sport above Recreation Diagram

  • Sport is competitive physical activities with a serious organisation- rules and regulations
  • Sport is mostly for prizes and rewards
  • Recreation is non competitive activity
  • Recreation is just for enjoyment
  • More people have access to recreation, hence the bottom or the pyramid
  • Sport is more specific, hence the smaller part of the pyramid
  • People who play sport (top if the pyramid) can be role models for those who are recreational players (bottom of the pyramid)
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Sport After 1800's

Need to know:

  • Industrial and urban revolutions
  • Effect of Industrial revolution on sport
  • Access to transport
  • Urban changes
  • Reductions in violence
  • Need for codification
  • Process of codification


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Industrial and Urban Revolutions

  • Transport developed
  • National scope- led to need of unified rules
  • Working time and leisure time governed by machine- ½ day holidays and regular time off
  • People moved to towns/ less space- sports had to get in scope
  • Loss of agricultural/ traditional customs new modern types of games / recreations/ fitness
  • Industry required education- all could now read and write rules
  • Machines could produce lots of equipment- more access at a lower cost
  • Standard of living improved- more money to spend on sport
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Access to Transport

  • Teams could now travel to other town/ cities to play away games
  • Led to leagues and national competitions
  • Spectators could travel to watch teams
  • Newspapers could report on fixtures across the country/ mail/ communication
  • Rules and instructions could be easily spread across the country
  • Travel it’s self can be a sport- biking, sailing and racing
  • Chance to visit new area’s- development of outdoor sports
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Effect of Industrial revolution on Sport


  • Initially less time/ shift pattern/ long working hours
  • Introduction of half days and holidays


  • Less space for sport/ loss of common land
  • More people than players- more spectators
  • Purpose built facilities for spectators


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Urban Changes

  • Lack of space meant games needed to be smaller- limit pitch size and amount of players
  • Too many people led to spectators- more now watch than play
  • Facilities developed- stadiums
  • Need for recreational space- public parks/ swimming pools
  • Gave people a sense of belonging- pride in town through sporting success
  • Need for a disciplined/ obedient/ healthy workforce
  • Decrease in the influence of the church
  • Increase in leisure time- Saturday ½ day off
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Effect of Industrial revolution on Sport Continued


  • Travel now avaliable, all teams could play away fixtures
  • Increased need for national rules


  • Education was compulsory so everyone could read written rules
  • Less influence by the church- holidays becoming industrial holidays
  • Equipment become readily avaliable
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Reductions In Violence

  • Reflection of a civilised society/ lawful society/ blood sports acts
  • Need for a fit workforce- less chance of injury
  • Role/ formation of governing bodies and rules
  • Middle class/ change in cultural control
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Need for Codification

  • Transport allowed leagues and competitions to be set up
  • Different counties had different rules therefore standard national rules were required
  • Urbanisation meant there was large numbers of players- needed to set out number of teams
  • Urbanisation meant there was a lack of space so pitch boundaries were required
  • Compulsory education meant all could read the written rules
  • Need for a fit workforce so games had to be non violent
  • Muscular Christianity- civilizing sport
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Process of Codification

  • Role of public schools/ oxbridge/ university move towards one set of rules
  • Formed national governing body associations
  • Invited representatives from clubs, schools and universities
  • Held meetings where rules were agreed
  • Compromised- melting pot of rules around the country
  • Agreed rules were written down, printed and distributed all over the country
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