By: S. Bueno
Sport can make very impactful changes to nations. It can bring unity, hope, and even peace.
In these times of despair, we all need to reconnect with sports. Even though we might not completely be able to play the sport we like, we can hope and plan on how to play once the health crisis is over. Sport has brought us many good things over the past few years, and it is important to reflect on how it has impacted us all.
The Olympic and Paralympic Truce promote unity for its spectators and competitors. Overall, it is a fantastic ground for athletes internationally. We can see that the IOC (International Olympic Comity) has the objective to encourage members of the government to work in favor of peace, and as for the Paralympics, this event gives the opportunity to disabled people, who originally would not be able to play, to show their true potentials and capabilities. People feel that Sport can represent their nation. When the Olympic Torch is lit during the Opening Ceremony of the Olympic Games every 4 years, the athletes of each nation line up to parade into the stadium behind their national flag. When a country’s name is announced and its athletes enter the Stadium, crowds roar and millions of people back home, watching television or the internet, feel a moment of national pride as their athletes enter the arena. Nations that are in conflict or have domestic problems such as violence are often brought together in unity at such moments.
Another example is Football. Every 4 years, the World Cup brings together millions of fans across the planet who all cheer and support their national team. You often see the roads decorated with the national flag and as nations advance through the competition, pride increases. If a country loses a match, it can sometimes be seen as a national disaster. When Brazil lost the last World Cup to Germany, people could be seen crying in the streets. While this was sad, it brought the nation together – but in grief.
It is also clear that the sporting industry has made a huge economic impact. All the sporting events usually hold million or billion-dollar deals. They welcome millions of tourists and spectators. This amount of money boosts local economies. One example is the New York City marathon. This event boosted the city’s economy by 340 million dollars.
Sport not only improves the economy, but it also helps promote national unity, city pride, citizens' wellbeing, equality, and much more! As well as health, of course.