72. Sports and Science

Have you ever wondered each sport represents ‘Experimental Science’? Think about all the ‘Ball Sports’. A ball is a projectile it is different matter whether you release it with fingers, hit it with rackets, kick with foot, strike it with sticks or just throw it. The ways of imparting dynamics to ball may be different but eventually you will need ‘Projectile Theory’ to explain its behavior at some instance. Each game has its own specialized theory, like how you impart spin to ball in case of cricket, table tennis or tennis. People who have understood it reached great heights in Sports; one classic example is ‘Michael Phelps’, who broke all the records in Olympics in 2008 for swimming. The reason he made use of knowledge generated by scientific studies on ‘marine life dynamics’.

Does it not suggest even ‘Sport Person’ adheres to Science? In fact his skill level is very specialized; he displays it in front of masses which can understand it (just imagine what people want to see some projectile theory or ball being sent to every corner of ground); he is more popular than a scientist sitting in lab running some experiments and perhaps that’s why he is highly paid; in some sense he is also seeker of knowledge, without knowing he will never understand what needs to be done, thus he needs to be humble (knowledge is never grabbed by some high headed egoist, he can reach a level but after that he will never go beyond).  This means a sport’s man just need to work hard, shed the sweat, give his best and if he becomes a legend then should accept is with gratitude. But what hurts the most sometimes few players won’t get their due; the classic example recently is ‘Man’s Hockey Indian Team’.

Don’t they belong to fraternity which practices ‘Experimental Science’? The way an academician spends time in his lab to discover higher truths or invent to improve quality of life, a players spends time in stadium (lab) to determine how possible he can control things (similar to discovery of self control) and invent innovative ways to decimate his opponent (opponent signifies weaknesses hindering his path to victory). Have you noticed something a scientist can either discover or invent at one time but sports person does both discover and invent at one time? A probability of scientist going corrupt is high as he prefers to work alone but all games teaches the team work (you may not agree for games played as ‘single events’ but a quick question can you practice them singly?) so the probability should be low. What I can tell you from experience controlling the ball in nets or on table give the same satisfaction as writing a piece of theory.

It makes sense to raise the question, why ‘education’ is given as only option given to kids and not similar weightage to ‘sports’ in India? Well I guess everyone knows the answer. The system is more than willing to provide means of earning to people who just practice theoretical aspect of science; many even don’t use it even being highly educated, rather than those who practice more practical and highly skilled aspect of science.

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