Extending the field of play: Revealing the dynamics between sports, health and place
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Although the sub-discipline of sports geography has a long fifty-year history it has been, at best, a sporadic endeavor. Whilst clearly indicating the fundamental geographical qualities of sports, it has never really taking off to the extent that arguably it should have given sport's social profile and importance. In way of a solution this paper presents triple tracks, or ways forward, that might circumvent this academic shortfall and cover some of the missed ground. First, pursuing the health component of sport far more thoroughly and in its very broadest sense, including its public health adoption and specific wellbeing, fitness and aesthetic features. Second, defining sport broadly beyond elite forms to include a wide-range of physical and lifestyle activities that possess elements of personal or interpersonal competition. Third, complementing sports geography by developing 'spatial sports studies' as a more expansive interdisciplinary field of inquiry spanning the health and social sciences. Indeed, these tracks potentially unearth substantial new research capacity by together considering the dynamics between sports, health and place.
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