Sports are competitions, usually between teams, where one or more players try to achieve a certain goal. This is achieved through physical exertion and sometimes through the use of skill.

The word “sport” has been around in the English language since the mid-15th century. It is derived from the Old French desporter, which means to play or amuse.

Sport has evolved over the centuries to include a variety of activities. Some of these activities are traditional games like football and basketball, while others are more recent. Some sports allow ties and a number of contests may be arranged in a tournament to produce a champion.

Modern sports emerged after European conquest in the late 17th century. During this time, athletics and fencing were viewed as art forms. However, a new focus on quantified achievement emerged.

These activities were designed to improve fitness and a person’s overall performance. They were also aimed at developing teamwork and effective communication. Throughout the Industrial Revolution, technicians tried to improve the equipment used in these sports.

While athletes sought the maximum in physical performance, they also trained systematically. They were motivated by the prospect of a paycheck, which was based on their physical abilities.

Since the 20th century, sports have undergone social and spatial diffusion. After World War II, basketball became a globally popular sport. Likewise, gymnastics and ice events have been major physical feats.

Although sports involve intense physical activity, they can be fun. It is possible to find a sport to suit all lifestyles and preferences.