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Chess as a Sport

Hey everybody! 

Our local chess enthusiast and chess supporter Rex Sinquefield, founder of the Chess Club and Scholastic Center Saint Louis and recently the World Chess Hall of Fame has pushed the debate on Chess as a sport to our state! 

Rex will be inducted into the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame and a debate has started on our local zine's site debating chess as a sport.

I believe it is a sport and requires mental physical dexterity. Time control adds a demanding element of speed and co-ordination to the game and I vote for it as a sport everytime. Have you ever seen world class players blitz it out in the final moments of the game? Have you ever suffered the physical toll of a 2 day tournament? I think a large part of the problem is this idea that our mind's, our brains and intellect are some how disconnected from the body, separate beings. Thinking is physical, is the brain a muscle? Maybe.

If you want to add you thoughts to the debate post a comment here or visit 

http://blogs.riverfronttimes.com/dailyrft/2011/12/rex_sinquefield_missouri_sports_hall_of_fame.php

and let 'em know your thoughts! 

I for one am excited to see Chess recognized as a sport and appreciate Rex's incredible efforts to bring chess to our city, our schools and our homes!

LET'S DO THIS! 

Comments


  • 3 years ago

    spartacus52

    Chess as a sport, i dont know, but who wants to be put into a category such as the olympics. I would say chess is way far and above "sport". Any age with enough mental capacity can play chess , it spans all borders , goes from a friendly match to utter genius on the chess battlefield, from pauper to kings. It has been likened to mathematics in it's complexity. Has certainly taken me on journeys of emotion when i win and sheer frustration when i lose but no blood has been spilt no broken bones.Plus i've made more friends and only one enemy in all the time i've played on this site, Thank you.

    Spartacus52

  • 3 years ago

    kamalakanta

    Chess is not a physical sport; it is a mental sport. There is definitely exertion; Petrosian lost 30 pounds in his match with Botvinnik. Karpov was definitely exhausted in his first match with Kasparov (1984).

    I used to play tournaments every weekend; it was not uncommon for me to lose 5 pounds while playing a 5-round swiss tournament.

  • 3 years ago

    faeryhorse

    I set up a chess club in the UK in a run down estate some 20 years ago.  A friend of mine said; 'You always know when Don's set a trap, he wiggles his left foot.  And Neville, he drums on the table and asks whether I'd like a cup of tea.'  I said; 'What do I do?'  'Ah, you do nothing.  But you feel the heat coming across the board!'  Do these examples constitute physical exertion? 

  • 3 years ago

    wormrose

    If the brain is muscle then chess is a sport.

  • 3 years ago

    Peedee

    Is anyone else scratching their head when this guy suggests the brain may be a muscle? Absolutely nuts....
  • 3 years ago

    finiascage

    Chess is a sport if pizza is a vegatable. 

  • 3 years ago

    Peedee

    I cannot believe after 25 years people are still trying to convince others that chess, checkers and now world of Warcraft are sports. Building a house for a living has all the above mentioned traits: mental/physical coordination, time pressure, calculation of measurements etc. Building a house is not a sport. I cannot fathom why people continue to have this ridiculous argument...
  • 3 years ago

    dzindzifan

    chess is one of the most important stages for human performance ever invented by mankind ... 

  • 3 years ago

    SchuBomb

    Hey guys, you know what would be a great idea? To redefine sport so chess fits, and as an added bonus, anything now becomes a sport! Who can sip a glass of water the slowest now is a sport! Who can do the most drugs in an hour becomes a sport! Who can watch the most porn in a day is now a sport!

  • 3 years ago

    frirlwlove

    Let's face it all strenous sports requires good coordination of healthy mind and group body muscles in our body ... Isn't it that chess  also require mind and body. Both are used mind thinks and decides, the hands pushes the pieces as dictated and processed in the big brain in the central nervous system. The muscles in the hands gripped and hold the pieces if without muscle coordination in the hands where the tendons are connected and to the bone where it is linked there will be no force to push it nor to move it. Unless all chess players possessed telekinetic power that it can move a piece without holding it. Moving a piece is a physical action conducted by hand and the group of muscle associated to made it function. It is a sport if both mind and body muscular activities are to be considered. All our bodily actions are because of the senses and nerve signal from and to the brain stem , how our brain will respond to those senses. Sports are all felt by the five senses. If we considr the strength, speed, endurance, sacrifices in the training, time, agility, then chess has all of it... the same with other sports that requires huge activities of muscles...

  • 3 years ago

    SchuBomb

  • 3 years ago

    ralphsnider

    the issue is also about how to get more funding from government depending on if it is classified as a sport not just an abstract argument.

  • 3 years ago

    Andonovich

    What you people leave out is that chess requires intense mental  coordination.  Studying for an education is brain work, but it does not require the mental coordination of a chess game.  With that factor added in, I can say with certainty that chess is a sport and can be classified as such.  Those who have read books on the chess psychology of GMs will be inclined to agree with me.  In truth, chess is far more than a mere boardgame. 

  • 3 years ago

    henry619

    i wouldn't call it a sport. I would admit that it is very exhausting mentally, but so is studying for an education. Which i would classify chess with education, it's mostly thinking and requires intellect. A sport requires more of the body than the mind and you get a different benefit physically than mentally unlike chess. I could understand why it would be called a sport since it is competitive. That is the only thing about chess that could be similar to a sport, yet a majority of what a sport requires physically isn't included in chess.

  • 3 years ago

    yashar04

    What is the benefit of subsuming chess under sport?

    Can somebody please explain to me why once in a while some chess enthusiasts try hard to persuade people that chess is a sport?

  • 3 years ago

    faeryhorse

    Returning to my definitions of 'sport' being shortened from the original ‘disport’ which meant ‘enjoying oneself’ as a diversion from ‘work’ or ‘serious matters’.  I've realised that the moment the 'sport' becomes work it ceases to be sport.  So, cheerio to all ye professionals and let's play chess for the love of it.

  • 3 years ago

    SpaceOddity

    A mathematical competition (such as the Math Olympiad) requires at least as much mental exertion as chess, if not more so.  If chess is a sport, then ALL kinds of activities that involve mental exertion are sports too, such as mathematics.

    It's EASY to come up with a justification for why chess would be a sport.  The hard part is coming up with a justification that does not prove TOO MUCH, ie, one that does NOT open the floodgates to just about anything being a sport.  That is logical argumentation 101.  So as I said before...if you want to give a guy an award, put his picture on the wall at the local TGI Friday's, than knock yourself out.  But then you better make room on the wall for the kid who won the science fair project, since that's as much of a 'sport' as chess.

    this is a no-brainer. 

  • 3 years ago

    frirlwlove

    Is there any athlete or sportsman who never used his brain to do physical activities to perform his finest performance ? Who really dictates the strategies perform and exerted to its optimum energy by our body. Before the body works and performs all it's action it is always our brain to process first what are, how , when, where. It is always the brain that brings a tremendous moments in the lives of great sportsman. Without the brain can the physical strength of the athlete can be really exerted, i.e boxing, weighlifting, marathon, all muscle activities , it is the brain that really feels the capacities of every athlete. 

  • 3 years ago

    froznfrog

    It seems as though the argument is whether or not chess is a physical game. I would argue that that depends on what type of chess you are refering to. There are various forms of chess matchs, for example, I recently took part in a match that required a decent amount of physical strenght as well as the usually mental exercision.

    Pawn = 5 push ups

    Bishop = 10

    Knight = 15

    Rook = 20

    Queen = 25

    Checkmate = 30

    It was interesting. Exhaustion is a difficult condition to be in while concentrating. Now, it can be a sport.

  • 3 years ago

    Elubas

    It depends on what you define as a sport. I've heard stuff about how you should be fit when you play a game of chess, and how it can be draining, but let's face it, chess is not a physical game; it's a purely mental drain. I think it's more accurate to say you should have a good amount of energy before you play a game, which means that you could be, overall, unhealthy, or unfit, but if you happen to have a good meal or workout that day, you'll feel sufficiently energized to play a few games.

    But even though chess is indeed a mental game, the intense competitiveness of the game can be compared to sports if you ask me. Two guys, sitting there for hours with no goal other than beating the guy in front of them. In other words, the desire to win that drives any sport is very much present in chess. Although, of course, chess is not a team game. Whatever chess is, it's as intense as any sport I know.

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