The Instigator
psunsrox
Pro (for)
Winning
21 Points
The Contender
badger
Con (against)
Losing
10 Points

Is chess a sport?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/25/2010 Category: Sports
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 6,056 times Debate No: 12141
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (10)
Votes (7)

 

psunsrox

Pro

First of all I thank you for viewing this debate and I thank my opponent for accepting.
Many people believe chess is not a sport but I disagree with this common misconception. A sport is defined as "an organized, competitive, and skillful physical activity requiring commitment and fair play. It is governed by a set of rules or customs." Chess fits all of this criteria. Though this opening argument is vague and general I will incorporate more detail in the next rounds. Please attempt to prove me wrong.
badger

Con

After googling my opponents definition, I found this: http://en.wikipedia.org...

My opponent only took the part of his own definition that suited his ageneda. It goes on to say: "It is governed by a set of rules or customs. In a sport the key factors are the physical capabilities and skills of the competitor when determining the outcome (winning or losing). The physical activity involves the movement of people, animals and/or a variety of objects such as balls and machines. In contrast, games such as card games and board games, though these could be called mind sports, require only mental skills. Non-competitive activities such as jogging and rock-climbing, are usually classified as recreations."

Fair enough, chess could be considered a sport going by the part of the definition my opponent has put forward, because moving chess pieces is a physical activity, but what the definition was based on needs to be taken into consideration. My opponent's definition provides an accurate description of what "many people" believe a sport to be, which, along with the pictures at the side of the link, suggest that it was based on the more physical activities such as football or basketball and the like. Just because chess loosley follows the definition of sport, does not mean that it is a sport, or that it should be considered one.

The reason chess is not a sport, going by your definition, is because physical activity is not a necessary requirement to make it what it is. If it were, then Stephen Hawking would not be able to play, and I'm sure he can. I couldn't, however, see him being put to much use on the basketball court.

The reason chess should not be considered a sport is because it would unnecessarily complicate the English language. The function of language is to allow us to communicate easily with each other. We have phrases like "video game" and "board game" which each cover a broad number of things and allow whoever hears them to have some idea of what the speaker is talking about. If these board and card games were to be considered sports, we would lose our word that covers the broad number of physical activities that "many people" consider sports, which would, as I said, unnecessarily complicate our language.

Cheers for the debate.
Debate Round No. 1
psunsrox

Pro

First of all, I'd like to apologize to my opponent and everybody else for using a non-legitimate source like Wikipedia.
But other online dictionaries including the Cambridge Dictionary have a similar definition so I will continue using this definition.

First I will address my opponents argument of complicating the English language.
One definition of complicate is "to make something more difficult to understand."
I doubt people would not understand what somebody is talking about if they referred to chess as a sport. Allow me to provide an example. There is debate whether a tomato is a vegetable or a fruit. Scientifically speaking, a tomato is definitely a fruit. True fruits are developed from the ovary in the base of the flower, and contain the seeds of the plant (though cultivated forms may be seedless). But the term 'vegetable' is more generally used of edible parts of plants, such as cabbage leaves, celery stalks, and potato tubers, which are not strictly the fruit of the plant from which they come. If somebody asked you what you favorite fruit was and you say tomato, they would not be confused and ask you again. In conclusion a tomato is the fruit of the tomato plant, but can be used as a vegetable in cooking.
I provide this example because in reality we are not always scientifically speaking. This can be the same with chess.

My opponent asked for the physical aspect of chess. When asking is chess a sport? it was not specified whether we were speaking of the board game. Therefore, chess boxing and playing chess on a life sized set where you push the pieces are included. These activities require physical activity. Even the board game of chess includes aspects of physical activity including endurance, speed, and agility.
badger

Con

badger forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
psunsrox

Pro

Chess requires extreme physical demands: a single game might last six
hours or more, and several such games might be played in one weekend. A study at Temple University reported that tournament chess causes physical changes similar to a comparable session of boxing or football. For these reasons, chess competitors undergo extensive physical conditioning.
Also chess requires pure skill as there is no luck involved. It requires deep calculation which sets it apart from other board games.
badger

Con

Sorry about that. I was surprised with a party.

Well, I concede the debate, so vote PRO.
Debate Round No. 3
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by chesssport 5 years ago
chesssport
Hi,
of course it is a sport:
chesssport.com
Posted by psunsrox 6 years ago
psunsrox
you probably didnt even read the debate i bet
Posted by psunsrox 6 years ago
psunsrox
"Well, I concede the debate, so vote PRO."-badger
Posted by RoyLatham 6 years ago
RoyLatham
Chess is a game, not a sport.
Posted by sqr47 6 years ago
sqr47
Exactly, it is not about physical activity, the definition of a sport is " a source of diversion : recreation b : sexual play c (1) : physical activity engaged in for pleasure (2) : a particular activity (as an athletic game) so engaged in" (From Merriam-Webster's website). Chess obviously falls under that definition, and all definitions that you could find in any dictionary.
Posted by Mirza 6 years ago
Mirza
It is not about physical activity. Is going to school sport? You use your mind quite a lot when listening to the teachers, doing some educational work, etc. "Mind sport" should not be considered sport per se. Just because it has the word "sport" in it does not make it a sport. The word "homosexual" has "homo" in it, but other words having "homo" in them do not necessarily refer to homosexuality at all, and they may be totally different. Similarly, "mind sport" can also be "mind activity" or something similar, but the word "sport" after "mind" does not make chess a sport.
Posted by sqr47 6 years ago
sqr47
It's obviously a sport, it requires absolutely no chance and is set solely on the skill of the player (or the ability of the programmers of the computer/the power of the computer) and chess is so much more mentally challenging than any other game. And people play it professionally, for money in competitions.
Posted by FREEDO 6 years ago
FREEDO
Chess is SO a sport. As is debating.
Posted by Mirza 6 years ago
Mirza
It is fairly subjective, because one can call it "mind sport."

I may take this though.
Posted by xxdarkxx 6 years ago
xxdarkxx
I'm half tempted to take this because your definition is technically wrong.
7 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Vote Placed by U.n 9 months ago
U.n
psunsroxbadgerTied
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Total points awarded:10 
Reasons for voting decision: Forfeiture.
Vote Placed by gannon260 1 year ago
gannon260
psunsroxbadgerTied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Con forfeited and pro won. I liked how pro talked about chess boxing, but he probably should have stated that argument earlier in his initial speech.
Vote Placed by Zarroette 1 year ago
Zarroette
psunsroxbadgerTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con concedes the debate.
Vote Placed by sammyc96 6 years ago
sammyc96
psunsroxbadgerTied
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Vote Placed by racketguy 6 years ago
racketguy
psunsroxbadgerTied
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Vote Placed by sqr47 6 years ago
sqr47
psunsroxbadgerTied
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Vote Placed by RoyLatham 6 years ago
RoyLatham
psunsroxbadgerTied
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