Recreation and Sport Studies

Studying, Experiencing and Facilitating Kinesiology, Recreation and Sport through Wellness and Physical Activity

Examining religion in sport

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As a graduating undergraduate in RSS, an article I would recommend reading is:

Sarkar, M., Hill, D., & Parker, A. (2014). Working with religious and spiritual athletes: Ethical considerations for sport psychologists. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 17(6), 48-55.

“Working with religious and spiritual athletes: Ethical considerations for sport psychologists” by Mustafa Sarkar, Denise M. Hill, and Andrew Parker is an article on how much religion has become a part of sport in today’s society and the importance on how sport psychologists discuss this topic with their clients.  The article touches on all different religions and how some may praise their god for their success, an example of this being a Muslim athlete saying, “Allah gave me the speed and strength, and I worked for His glory” instead of statements such as “I’m fast, I’m strong, I’m ready” (Sarkar et al., 2014).

I personally feel that religion is important and should be practised everyday by a person of faith; however I do not feel that all the blame or glory should be placed on that respective god and that sport psychologists should explain this to their clients.

Do you feel that athletes of faith should place all their success or failures on their respective god and is it up to a sport psychologists to explain this to the athlete?

Andrew Hughes

One thought on “Examining religion in sport

  1. This is definitely something I have always found fascinating. Similar to the hospital situation where the patients thanks god for their healing rather than the doctors and nurses. I respect their choice in practicing their religion in whatever way gets them into the game without intrusion into others beliefs, but speaking as an Atheist, I’d like to see the social acceptance of non religious credit given as demonstrated in this parody. It seems blasphemous to not credit their god(s) for some success during interviews as it has become so ingrained in our sports culture. Perhaps, you’ve seen this parody:


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