Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Discuss anything you like about chess related matters in this forum.
NickFaulks
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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by NickFaulks » Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:25 pm

Chris Wardle wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 8:46 am
If you have to take the law of gravity into account, it's a sport.

If you don't, it's a game.
I think this is the most succinct definition I've heard.

Of course, a serious "game" can be a much more meaningful contest than a casual "sport". That is why it's such a shame that so much financial significance hangs on one arbitrary word.

Nick Burrows
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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by Nick Burrows » Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:38 pm

Chris Wardle wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:21 pm
Nick Burrows wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:12 pm
So to recap;

It is "ridiculous" to define chess as a sport because you do not know if your opponent is cheating.

Yet, when your opponent cheats in other sports, it enhances the "sportiness"

After proposing an interesting definition of sport, it turns out that your logic has zero gravity :P
Well done, you've spotted the absurdity of your own definition of sport taken to its logical conclusion.
No.

My point was that the intense mental competitiveness of chess, has a strong physiological dimension, that is not related to gravity.

The 2 statements I just highlighted were made by you, and are completely inconsistent.

Also that's the 2nd time you have called somebody elses view than your own - "absurd".

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Chris Goodall
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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by Chris Goodall » Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:56 pm

Nick Burrows wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:38 pm
No.

My point was that the intense mental competitiveness of chess, has a strong physiological dimension, that is not related to gravity.
Absolutely! But your dividing line between sport and not-sport was nothing to do with intense mental competitiveness. Your dividing line between sport and not-sport was the presence of one single human opponent. Which would make XBox Live a sport, but would exclude Kasparov vs. the World or Kasparov vs. Deep Blue.
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Nick Burrows
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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by Nick Burrows » Tue Mar 13, 2018 3:35 pm

Chris Wardle wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:56 pm
But your dividing line between sport and not-sport was nothing to do with intense mental competitiveness. Your dividing line between sport and not-sport was the presence of one single human opponent.
Incorrect.

My first and main point was:
Its not the physical mechanics that make chess a sport, but the mental and physical stress that the chess sportsman has to deal with.
Then in response to your question asking does a sport require a human opponent, I confirmed that it is (OBVIOUSLY) a 2nd requirement.

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Chris Goodall
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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by Chris Goodall » Tue Mar 13, 2018 3:58 pm

Nick Burrows wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 3:35 pm
Chris Wardle wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:56 pm
But your dividing line between sport and not-sport was nothing to do with intense mental competitiveness. Your dividing line between sport and not-sport was the presence of one single human opponent.
Incorrect.

My first and main point was:
Its not the physical mechanics that make chess a sport, but the mental and physical stress that the chess sportsman has to deal with.
Then in response to your question asking does a sport require a human opponent, I confirmed that it is (OBVIOUSLY) a 2nd requirement.
I wasn't asking whether sport required a human opponent. I was pointing out the absurdity of basing your definition of sport on whether it causes stress to its participants, given that a human behind a screen and a computer behind a screen could play moves that are indistinguishable, but one of them would clearly be subject to more stress than the other. One could also make the obvious point that many other things create mental and physical stress. Watching a game of football with my brother, having made a bet with him on the outcome, would meet both your criteria for a sport. And yet the NHS keeps telling me that that doesn't count towards my 30 minutes of exercise a day!
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MJMcCready
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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by MJMcCready » Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:57 pm

I think people only started asking whether chess is a sport is when sport began professionalising itself. Nowadays that means a steady source of income from the government, which is the driving force behind much of the debate. I am quite happy to think of it as a parlour game and nothing more but then I am not in need of government funds.

The Aussies call everything sport, often saying when entering tournament playing halls 'G'day sport' which means 'Hello chess' in English. In Australian English, chess and every chess player can be called sport, and therefore, 'a sport'.

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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by Nick Burrows » Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:32 pm

Chris Wardle wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 3:58 pm
I wasn't asking whether sport required a human opponent. I was pointing out the absurdity of basing your definition of sport on whether it causes stress to its participants, given that a human behind a screen and a computer behind a screen could play moves that are indistinguishable, but one of them would clearly be subject to more stress than the other. One could also make the obvious point that many other things create mental and physical stress. Watching a game of football with my brother, having made a bet with him on the outcome, would meet both your criteria for a sport. And yet the NHS keeps telling me that that doesn't count towards my 30 minutes of exercise a day!
Rather than offering a complete definition of what a sport is, I was making the point that the relevant physical aspect of chess is not related to gravity or the mechanics of moving pieces but in the effect that intense concentration, calculation, and repeated adrenaline surges has on the participants. One of Carlsens' secret weapons is his physical fitness, that allows him to cope calmly with stress and recover faster.
This dimension of chess is known to players (it's why we keep playing!) but not to the general public, or funders.

Watching a game of football as you described, fits the definitions you have limited me to, but there are many more aspects to chess. In some respects it is more physically demanding than playing football.

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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by Chris Goodall » Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:59 pm

Nick Burrows wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:32 pm
the relevant physical aspect of chess
Is this physical aspect of chess sufficient, by itself, to make chess into a sport, or not? It's a simple enough question. If it is, then it must also be sufficient to make watching football a sport. If it isn't, then I prefer my simple definition of sport that I've shared with everyone, to your complex definition that you're keeping secret.
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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by Nick Burrows » Tue Mar 13, 2018 11:02 pm

It is the only relevant physical aspect because as already mentioned you could play equally well without physical motion. You are the one trying to reduce the whole question of defining what makes a sport down to a single factor. Even reducing the physical aspect down further into Gravity alone.

It is a game. Played between 2 human beings. Time limited. Clearly defined rules of play. Intensely competitive. Professional Aspect. Individual and International representation. Wada Regulated. Defined by some as a mind sport - recognising it's strong sporting aspects. Extremely physically demanding with an underrated physical aspect not appreciated by non-players. It replaces simple hand-eye coordination with extremely precise and complex visualisation. It replaces the repetitive training of (in some sports) a single physical motion, with the multi-faceted, repetitive training of the most important part of the physical body - the brain.

All together it makes for a complex and unique sport, that is many times over more skilful and demanding both physically and mentally than many 'officially recognised' sports.

Comparing it to watching a game is as you know - ABSURD

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Chris Goodall
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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by Chris Goodall » Wed Mar 14, 2018 12:01 am

Nick Burrows wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 11:02 pm
It is the only relevant physical aspect because as already mentioned you could play equally well without physical motion. You are the one trying to reduce the whole question of defining what makes a sport down to a single factor. Even reducing the physical aspect down further into Gravity alone.

It is a game. Played between 2 human beings. Time limited. Clearly defined rules of play. Intensely competitive. Professional Aspect. Individual and International representation. Wada Regulated. Defined by some as a mind sport - recognising it's strong sporting aspects. Extremely physically demanding with an underrated physical aspect not appreciated by non-players. It replaces simple hand-eye coordination with extremely precise and complex visualisation. It replaces the repetitive training of (in some sports) a single physical motion, with the multi-faceted, repetitive training of the most important part of the physical body - the brain.

All together it makes for a complex and unique sport, that is many times over more skilful and demanding both physically and mentally than many 'officially recognised' sports.

Comparing it to watching a game is as you know - ABSURD
You're not even attempting to answer the question. You're just a) brainstorming things you like about (high-level) chess and then b) arbitrarily declaring it a sport, and hoping we won't notice the lack of connection between a) and b).

"Trying to reduce the whole question of defining what makes a sport down to a single factor" is a good thing. Occam's Razor. The larger the pile of attributes your definition encompasses, the more likely you are to be overfitting the curve. You'll end up with a definition that's adequate for the single purpose of placing chess in the "sport" category, and extravagantly useless at categorising anything else.

(Tangentially: there are many officially recognised sports that are many times less physically demanding than chess? Are you sure? Can you give us an example?)
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Stewart Reuben
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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by Stewart Reuben » Wed Mar 14, 2018 12:51 pm

Somebody upwind said that chess is time-limited. It doen't hav to be. One game is known to have lasted 50 years.

Nick Faulks requested a succinct definition of 'sport'.
An actitivity is a sport if I believe it is.
You want it a bit longer?
An actitivity is a sport if the person considering the matter believe it is.

IanCalvert
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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by IanCalvert » Wed Mar 14, 2018 6:11 pm

I think chess is naturally described as a mind sport.

The importance for public funding of "displaying physical skills" is I believe that historically physical skills were seen as healthy. This suggests , as a novel/desperate argument, that English chess advocates might argue that chess results in healthy mental activity like say bridge but not like say most computer games?

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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by Chris Goodall » Wed Mar 14, 2018 7:02 pm

Stewart Reuben wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 12:51 pm
An actitivity is a sport if I believe it is.
You want it a bit longer?
An actitivity is a sport if the person considering the matter believe it is.
I mean, sure, but no-one would claim that drinking tea and reading this forum is a sport, so there must be something we can say about what the word signifies to English speakers in the real world.
IanCalvert wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 6:11 pm
I think chess is naturally described as a mind sport.

The importance for public funding of "displaying physical skills" is I believe that historically physical skills were seen as healthy. This suggests , as a novel/desperate argument, that English chess advocates might argue that chess results in healthy mental activity like say bridge but not like say most computer games?
Advocates of physical sport in 2018 have very specific health benefits they can point to. It's not just guesswork any more. This activity exercises these muscles and raises your heart rate to this percentage of the maximum which protects against these diseases. "Healthier than video games" is a guess.
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A.Kluckova
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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by A.Kluckova » Sat Apr 07, 2018 2:08 pm

The petition to recognise chess as a sport .

I was born more than half century ago and chess was the sport in my country at that time and is the sport till now. No one doubts it, although you might have some jokes about this theme , but jokes are about everything. So I never thought that chess could not be a sport as like as you never thought why just the 7 days in the week.

When you are growing in this idea, think about - Chess s not a sport but a game - is for you very far. SVK with 5 mil. of inhabitants , with 3231 paying members of the Slovak Chess Federation in 2018, with subsidies from the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport 120 000 eur in 2018. It means basic conditions are free, my daughter got always free coaching at all youth championships she has plaid etc.

As I know whole EEU area including the East Germany area has the same understanding about the chess. I think also another EU countries, not only EEU contries.

So is it not the question for EU parliament? We must automatically adopted EU laws although some of them were against our traditions or convictions. So what about chess? If chess was the sport in the major of number of EU countries, was not automatically also in the UK as a basic EU member?

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Re: Chess is not a sport but a game. So what’s the difference?

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sat Apr 07, 2018 2:32 pm

A.Kluckova wrote:
Sat Apr 07, 2018 2:08 pm
We must automatically adopted EU laws although some of them were against our traditions or convictions. So what about chess?
You may have noticed that the UK had a referendum on this, one of the subtexts being "who governs?".

The UK government and courts cling resolutely to the premise that sport involves physical activity, something that's been in law since around 1937. The most recent case was the English Bridge Union's attempt to reclaim VAT.

http://www.ebu.co.uk/documents/media/pr ... ruling.pdf

Chess is treated as a sport in some fields of activity, for example Cambridge University chess players are awarded "half blues" for taking part in the annual match with Oxford. Additionally you can set up a sports charity for chess.

It's actually a general premise of the English speaking world that physical activity is required. Chess isn't a sport in the USA, Canada or Australia.

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