A team sport is a type of sport where the fundamental nature of the game or sport necessitates the participation of multiple individuals working together as a team, and it is inherently impossible or highly impractical to execute the sport as a single-player endeavour. In team sports, the cooperative effort of team members is essential for the sport to function and achieve its objectives.The objective often involves teammates facilitating the movement of a ball or similar object in accordance with a set of rules, in order to score points. Examples are basketball, volleyball, rugby, water polo, handball, lacrosse, cricket, baseball, and the various forms of football, and hockey. These sports emphasize teamwork, strategy, and coordination among team members, while competing against opposing teams, to achieve a common goal.[2] Team sports do not include individual or individual-to-team events within a sport.[3]

Cricket is a popular team sport played at international level.
Ice hockey, a popular winter team sport.
Based on the number of participating athletes, Bandy is the second most popular winter sport in the world.[1]

Distinctions edit

The meaning of a "team sport" has been disputed in recent years. Some types of sports have different objectives or rules than "traditional" team sports. These types of team sports do not involve teammates facilitating the movement of a ball or similar object in accordance with a set of rules, in order to score points. Overall, the division into team sports and individual sports is not always unproblematic, since there are different combinations in the individual sports.

Team sports and individual-to-team events edit

Pure team sports
This includes sports that can only be practiced as a team sport. The number of team members is fixed for the team. In order to compete successfully in championships and tournaments, teams need a roster that is significantly larger than the number of players starting the game. Players may be substituted from a squad in competition matches to replace exhausted or injured players or to make tactical changes. Examples are basketball, volleyball, rugby, water polo, handball, lacrosse, cricket, baseball, and the various forms of football, and hockey.

Teams of two people are sports, such as dancesport or beach volleyball. No substitute players are used here. The two partners are absolutely dependent on each other. The absence of a person here means the loss of competitiveness.[4][5][6]

In addition, there are sports, while mostly played singles, that are also played in different formations together cooperatively, such as badminton, table tennis or tennis in doubles, although this formation is significantly lower in terms of prestige, spectators and prize money.[7] In these formations, common tactics, teamwork and agreements are crucial for success. There are also different rowing formations such as one, two, four and eight or sailing with their different boat classes.[8][9] The most important thing here is smooth movements and common tactics. This also applies approximately to the team time trial in cycling,[10][11] while it is the case with cycling tours and one-day races are different tasks for the team members of a cycling team.[12][13]

In some sports, relay races are held, which can be distinguished from pure team evaluations by a common racing tactic and the observance of change regulations. Relay races are common in running, swimming, cross-country skiing, biathlon or short-track speed skating and are also an integral part in the Olympic Games program[14] with high popularity. [15][16]

Team ratings
There are team ratings in many sports, in which the results of individual athletes or formations are added up. In cycling team members, whilst still in competition with each other, will also work towards assisting one member of the team, usually a specialist, to the highest possible finishing position.[13][12][17] In some sports where participants are entered by a team, they do not only compete against members of other teams, but also against each other for points towards championship standings, for example in motorsport, particularly Formula One.[18] Team orders can occur in such teams and although previously accepted was banned in Formula One[19] between 2002 and 2010. After a controversy involving team orders at the 2010 German Grand Prix however, the regulation was removed as of the 2011 season.[20]

Overview comparison edit

Overview comparison
Team Sports Formations in Sports Relay Races Sports with Team Ratings
(e.g., Soccer, Basketball) (e.g., Synchronized Swimming, Doubles Tennis) (e.g., Track and Field relay, Swimming relay) (e.g., Gymnastics, Figure skating)
  • In team sports, the entire game or match revolves around team dynamics.
  • The outcome depends on collective performance throughout the entire duration of the match.
  • The teamwork, strategy, and coordination among team members are crucial for success.
  • Do not include individual or individual-to-team events within a sport.
  • These sports can be performed individually, but they also have team variations.
  • In synchronized swimming, swimmers perform coordinated routines together.
  • In doubles tennis, two players collaborate as a team to compete against another pair.
  • Team formations enhance the strategic and cooperative elements of these sports.
  • Relay races involve teams, but they are often a series of individual efforts within a team context.
  • Each team member runs a segment of the race independently.
  • Success depends on both individual speed and the smooth transition between the athletes.
  • These sports include individual performances, but the team rating considers the cumulative scores of all team members.
  • Team members' performances contribute to the team's overall score, but they may perform their routines individually.
  • Team strategy involves selecting the right competitors for specific events to maximize the team's chances.

In summary, team sports are characterized by the impossibility or impracticality of executing the sport as a single-player endeavor, and the entire game or match relies on team dynamics. In contrast, sports with team ratings and formations involve both individual and team aspects, where individual performances contribute to a team's overall success but may not be entirely reliant on team dynamics. Relay races combine individual efforts within a team context, where smooth transitions are essential.

History edit

Ancient Greek wrestlers.

Areas around the Mediterranean had a long tradition of athletic events. Ancient Egyptians and Mesopotamians depicted athletic scenes in tombs of kings and their nobles. They did not, however, hold regular competitions, and those events that occurred were probably the preserve of kings and upper classes. Minoans culture held gymnastics in high esteem, with bull-leaping, tumbling, running, wrestling and boxing shown on their frescoes. The Mycenaeans adopted Minoan games and also raced chariots in religious or funerary ceremonies.[21][22] Homer's heroes participate in athletic competitions to honor the dead. In the Iliad there are chariot races, boxing, wrestling, a foot race, as well as fencing, archery, and spear throwing. The Odyssey adds to these a long jump and discus throw.[23]

The ball in front of the goal during a game of pok-ta-pok, 2006

It was in Greece that sports were first instituted formally, with the first Olympic Games recorded in 776 BCE in Olympia, where they were celebrated until 393 CE.[24] These ancient Olympic Games consisted of running, long jump, boxing, wrestling, Pankration (combat sport), discus throw, and javelin throw.[25] In the Bayankhongor Province of Mongolia, Neolithic-era cave paintings dating to 7000 BC depict a wrestling match surrounded by crowds.[26] Prehistoric cave-paintings in Japan show a sport similar to sumo wrestling.[27] In Wadi Sura, near Gilf Kebir in Libya, a Neolithic rock painting in the cave of swimmers shows evidence of swimming and archery being practiced around 6000 BC.[28]

Team sports have a rich and ancient history dating back thousands of years. These activities served as important facets of society, not only for physical fitness but also for social, cultural, and even political purposes. In ancient civilizations, team sports were prevalent and often intertwined with religious and cultural practices. In Mesoamerica, the Aztec ball game, ollamaliztli, was not just a sport but also a ritual with symbolic significance.[29]

The Greeks, who laid the foundations for many contemporary sports, held various team sports as central to their culture. The Olympic Games, first recorded in 776 BCE, featured events like chariot racing and team foot races, fostering unity and friendly competition among city-states.[30] The Spartans, known for their military prowess, engaged in team sports like the episkyros, a type of football.[31]

Rome adopted and adapted many Greek sports, introducing harpastum, a ball game similar to soccer, and ludi circenses, which included team chariot racing. These sports provided a sense of entertainment and unity, while also serving as a means of social control.[32]

In ancient China, cuju was a popular team sport akin to modern soccer, played as early as the Han Dynasty (206 BCE – 220 CE). The sport was not only a form of entertainment but also a means of fostering camaraderie among communities.[33]

Throughout history, team sports have reflected the values and priorities of their respective cultures. Whether it was the competitive spirit of the Greeks, the discipline of the Romans, or the communal bonding in China, ancient team sports played an integral role in the social fabric of civilizations. They transcended mere physical activity, serving as a testament to the enduring significance of sports in human history. Today, these ancient traditions continue to influence modern team sports, reminding us of the timeless appeal and cultural importance of collective athletic endeavors.

Olympic team sports edit

status after the 2022 Winter Olympics

Current Olympic team sports (11) edit

Basketball at the 2016 Summer Olympics.

All Olympic team sports include competitions for both men and women.

Summer Olympics (9)

Sport Men Women
First edition Editions First edition Editions
  Football at the Summer Olympics Paris 1900 27 Atlanta 1996 7
  Water polo at the Summer Olympics Paris 1900 28 Sydney 2000 6
  Field hockey at the Summer Olympics London 1908 24 Moscow 1980 11
  Basketball at the Summer Olympics Berlin 1936 20 Montreal 1976 12
  Handball at the Summer Olympics Berlin 1936 14 Montreal 1976 12
  Volleyball at the Summer Olympics Tokyo 1964 15 Tokyo 1964 15
  Beach volleyball at the Summer Olympics Atlanta 1996 7 Atlanta 1996 7
  Rugby sevens at the Summer Olympics Rio de Janeiro 2016 2 Rio de Janeiro 2016 2
  3x3 basketball at the Summer Olympics Tokyo 2020 1 Tokyo 2020 1

Winter Olympics (2)

Ice hockey and curling are team sports at the Winter Olympics, with particularity that the men's tournament in Ice hockey was introduced at the 1920 Summer Olympics and was transferred permanently to the Winter Olympic Games program in 1924, in France. Before the monobob event, as an additional women's class, has been introduced by the IBSF for the 2020–21 world cup season and the 2022 Olympic games, bobsleigh was considered as a pure team sport, that can only be practiced as a team with at least two drivers. At the present time the men's event has classes for both two-man and four-man sleds and the women's class is restricted only to two persons and the monobob event.[34]

Sport Men Women
First edition Editions First edition Editions
  Ice hockey at the Winter Olympics Antwerp 1920 25 Nagano 1998 7
  Curling at the Winter Olympics Chamonix 1924 8 Nagano 1998 7

Discontinued Olympic team sports (7) edit

Demonstration team sports at the Olympic Games (9) edit

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ Knut Audun Sørensen (4 December 2015). "Bandy versus the 50 Olympic Winter Games Disciplines". Archived from the original on 22 December 2015.
  2. ^ Bouthier, Daniel; Godbout, Paul; Gréhaigne, Jean-Francis (1997). "Performance Assessment in Team Sports". Journal of Teaching in Physical Education. 16 (4): 500–516. doi:10.1123/jtpe.16.4.500. Retrieved 20 July 2022.
  3. ^ "Laterality Effects on Performance in Team Sports". ScienceDirect. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  4. ^ "Why Beach Volleyball Has Only 2 players? (EXPLAINED) – Volley Expert". Volley Expert. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  5. ^ "FIVBBVBSportsRegulations" (PDF). FIVB.com. Fédération Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB). Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  6. ^ "WDSF Competition Rules (2023)". worlddancesport.org. World DanceSport Federation (WDSF). Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  7. ^ "US Open Prize Money 2023 - Perfect Tennis". perfect-tennis.com. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  8. ^ British Rowing (2021). 2021 Rules of Racing (PDF). p. 10. Archived (PDF) from the original on 10 April 2021.
  9. ^ "World Sailing - World Sailing Classes". sailing.org. World Sailing. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  10. ^ "How to ride a team time trial – EF Education-EasyPost". EF PRO CYCLING. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  11. ^ "Anatomy of a Team Time Trial – TrainingPeaks". TRAININGPEAKS. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  12. ^ a b "Cycling 101: Type of riders". tourdownunder.com. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  13. ^ a b "The role of the road captain in professional cycling – Rouleur". rouleur.cc. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  14. ^ "Olympics Sports List". olympics.com. International Olympic Committee. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  15. ^ "Relay Races – Olympics.com". olympics.com. International Olympic Committee. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  16. ^ "USA Swimming offers $1 million for Olympic relay sweep - NBC Sports". nbc.com. NBC. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  17. ^ "Five good reasons to follow the team classification". Letour.fr. Amaury Sport Organisation. 28 June 2011. Archived from the original on 22 October 2010. Retrieved 29 June 2011.
  18. ^ "2023 Constructor Standings". formula1.com. Formula One Group. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  19. ^ "2008 FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 6 December 2008. Retrieved 21 October 2018.
  20. ^ "2010 FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 24 January 2011. Retrieved 21 October 2018.
  21. ^ Young, pp. 5–6
  22. ^ Wendy J. Raschke (15 June 1988). Archaeology Of The Olympics: The Olympics & Other Festivals In Antiquity. Univ of Wisconsin Press. pp. 22–. ISBN 978-0-299-11334-6. Archived from the original on 12 October 2013. Retrieved 12 August 2012.
  23. ^ Young, p. 6
  24. ^ "History". Olympic Games. Archived from the original on 9 August 2016. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  25. ^ "Ancient Olympic Sports - running, long jump, discus, pankration". olympics.com. International Olympic Committee. Retrieved 5 September 2023.
  26. ^ Hartsell, Jeff. "Wrestling 'in our blood". Bulldogs' Luvsandor. Archived from the original on 16 March 2013. Retrieved 25 October 2015.
  27. ^ Robert Crego (2003). Sports and Games of the 18th and 19th Centuries. Greenwood Publishing Group. pp. 34–. ISBN 978-0-313-31610-4. Retrieved 25 October 2015.
  28. ^ Győző Vörös (2007). Egyptian Temple Architecture: 100 Years of Hungarian Excavations in Egypt, 1907– 2007. American Univ in Cairo Press. pp. 39–. ISBN 978-963-662-084-4. Retrieved 25 October 2015.
  29. ^ E. Michael Whittington (2001). The Sport of Life and Death: The Mesoamerican Ballgame. Thames & Hudson. ISBN 978-0500051085.
  30. ^ Stephen G. Miller (2006). Ancient Greek Athletics. Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0300115291. Retrieved 4 September 2023.
  31. ^ Stephen G. Miller (2006). Ancient Greek Athletics. Yale University Press. pp. 148–, 244–. ISBN 978-0300115291. Retrieved 4 September 2023.
  32. ^ Mark Golden (2010). Sport and Society in Ancient Greece. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0521497909. Retrieved 4 September 2023.
  33. ^ "History of Football - The Origins". FIFA. Archived from the original on 28 October 2017. Retrieved 29 March 2019.
  34. ^ "BOBSLEIGH". International Olympic Committee. 2023. Retrieved 3 September 2023.


External links edit