Audience Participation in Sport – Part 1
It is well known that sport is a way of bringing people together and just about every sport in the world has a loyal following. Nothing brings a local community or nation together more than sporting occasions, and the grander they are the more impact they have. In this blog we look at different sports across the world, the fans that follow them and the many ways the audience participates in with all the fun and games. First, we look at international sport and the huge impact it has on nations across the globe.
When it comes to audience participation then following your nation must rank among the highest. Whether sportsmen and athletes compete separately or as teams it is always an exciting prospect cheering your team on against a neighboring country.
The Olympic Games brings nations from all over the world to compete head on against each other in a multitude of multidisciplinary team and separate events. The opening ceremony is a grand and lavish affair, with each nation walking out behind their country’s flag in smart uniforms. Around the packed arena national flags are fervently waved by home supporters cheering on their country to defeat the other nations.
Perhaps the greatest prequel to any event is the long and epic journey of the Olympic Torch that is carried around the globe visiting each and every competing nation, whetting the appetite of what is to come. It creates a sense of awe that surrounds the game and heightens expectations of what is to come.
International Rugby Union is one of the most nationalistic sports played in the world today. The teams enter the arena to fanfares and explosions of fire to a most raucous ovation. They then stand in a line whilst the national anthems of both countries are played whilst the teams and fans stand and sing along. In the case of the greatest Rugby Team presently in the world, which is New Zealand, the team spur their supporters on by challenging their opponents in a brutal Mauri warrior chant called the Haka. The players face their opponents and perform a war dance that was traditionally used on battlefields.
Many other international sporting occasions have a special affinity to the audience, and fans find their most patriotic feelings when they see their counties flag held aloft. Especially so when they are neighboring countries and so have rivalries that can go back hundreds of years.
It is not just on the international stage that fans become almost hysterical is support of their teams. Fans of teams and sportsman that come from their particular local town or city are just as passionate as those that support their countries. There are many sports around the world that have fanatical local support that almost reaches fever pitch. In part two of this blog we look a football or soccer as it is called in North America, American football, motor racing, baseball and cricket.
We see how these sports encourage their fans to join in on all the fun, and to add their support in a manner that spurs the players to do better. Another aspect to having hysterical fans is that the opposition fear going to that particular stadium.