Winning or the taking part that counts?

With school sports day season almost over it drew me back to the debate about competitive school sport and how to create the appropriate balance between valuing winning and participation.

The word sports day like physical education can inspire both joy and terror in the hearts of students everywhere. For many, sports day can be a great day of fun, games and the chance to bag a prize or two. For others, it might feel like have to take part in something that they are not very good at.

With more and more schools recognising the importance of exercise, many schools have ‘non-competitive’ sports days, where there are no winners at all.

It is hoped that by making sports days less competitive, children of all abilities will take part for fun without fear of losing.

But some people feel that it’s important that sport has winners and that learning to lose is just as important as learning how to win.

We want to know what you think – Should School Sports Day be competitive or not? Please comment below.

1) What’s the point if no one wins?

If you think it should be a competition, there are lots of people who agree with you – parents in particular!

According, to a 2017 survey by Families Online, 82% of parents say they prefer ‘traditional’ competitive sports days.

One reason being that many adults feel that competition is a part of life, and you learn valuable lessons in both winning and losing. It’s also an opportunity for some children who struggle in lessons, to show off their physical and sporting skills.

2) Sport isn’t just about winning.

Some people just see sports day as a massive competition to prove who is best at running, jumping, hopping – you name it!

But should sport just be about winning?

Some people say there should be much more focus on healthy exercise and being in a team – everyone should be congratulated for trying and playing their part.

Many teachers and schools say that taking the pressure out of winning on sports day means that more kids are motivated to take part.

Exercise and fitness is important for everyone, no matter how good at sport you are, and this way everyone is celebrated for being a part of something.

What are your thoughts should sports days be geared around winning or taking part – can you get a balance between both? Please comment and leave your thoughts below.

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