Fun, fervor or fitness? : sporting cultures and happiness

Document Type

Book chapter

Source Publication

Happiness and public policy : theory, case studies and implications

Publication Date


First Page


Last Page



Palgrave Macmillan


All cultures have played games or sports, although the forms and formats have undoubtedly changed over time. Today, for many people sport is about exercise, leisure, and doing things for fun, but clearly it is also much more than that. At an institutionalized level sport is an activity that is both strenuous and involves competition, sometimes intense competition. Yet it should also be enjoyable for both players and spectators. According to one nineteenth century etymologist, sport means “mirth”, being derived form the medieval English word “disporten”, to amuse (Tomlinson 1999, p. 5).

Additional Information

ISBN of the source publication: 9780230288027

Recommended Citation

Bridges, B. (2006). Fun, fervor or fitness?: Sporting cultures and happiness. In Y.-k. Ng & L. S. Ho (Eds.), Happiness and public policy: Theory, case studies and implications (pp. 221-234). New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

This document is currently not available here.