Brains and Education When It Comes to Sportsmen

Dann KhanAnalyst IApril 17, 2009

LONDON - JULY 18: A woman exercises in front of a screen displaying puzzles and games as part of a full mind and body workout at the Fit Rooms on July 18, 2007 in London, England. Newly launched 'Puzzler Brain Train' Magazine has teamed up with the Fit Rooms in Fulham so that gym-goers can muscle up their brain power for National Brain Train Awareness Week, July 16-22.  (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

There is a myth that sportsmen do not have brains. It is because during their career, they have so much of an aggressive body tussle involved that they end up hurting their brain and losing some of it.

Though this may be true in many cases, it is still something that as a sports fan, I will never be able to accept. Dick Francis, who is a world famous writer, was a champion jockey in his days, and we all know jockeys fall a lot.

How can one take this kind of stuff? Even sports people have feelings, and they definitely have brains. We see them using it when they make tactical decisions while playing.

There is however another story. It is believed that people become sportsmen because they do not have the brains to cope with any other profession.

There is another thing that can be very much debatable but is definitely a statement more true. People are not always made for the conventional life and don't understand it either.

So that brings us to education. What does it mean to a player? What can it get him?

There are a few points to look at then.

1) Though it may not seem obvious, there is a definite advantage in knowing some science and social science. Not only does it give you some idea about the conditions you play in, how you can utilize them and if a shot is possible or not, but it also helps the brain adapt to thinking rationally and acting accordingly.

2) Then there is always a chance that you will not be successful at what you do. You may end up in a situation where you are not sure how to support your family as you are not skilled at anything else. I am sure that no one wants to end up in a situation of that kind. 

3) Education is a good backup if you want to get into sports. This was highlighted in the last point. But having a back up plan also helps in that you will be a bit more care free when you play and won't be under the immense pressure of having to succeed in what you do.

That means you are more relaxed, and because of that, you end up playing better. Many of the better players have also had this backup.

So Education is important even if you choose not to get into a career that will be directly influenced by it. Unfortunately, it is not stressed upon by most people.

But there is another thing: English.

How much does that help? If my opinion, I would say nil.

However, this is one part of education that is stressed upon.

It does not help you in any manner as a player, but it just helps to show that you are great at everything. For some reason, other subjects do not matter that much.

It is not at the local stage when this thing is stressed upon but at the international stage. At the International stage, the commentary and the media interviews trouble the player as well as those million fans who just guffaw without understanding that they make the person they are laughing at feel as if he is a good for nothing.

He is there to play sports, not to show his English skill.

So this is where the huge problem starts for a sportsman. He faces the criticism for not having brains as he is not capable of the other work.

Then he is also told that he lost his brains because he got hit so many times on his head.

In the end, when he starts realizing that education might have helped, though people would not have said all that, his education is not valued that much in the sporting world. Then when he gets out of all this trouble and feels fine about himself, he is reminded that he does not know English.

This is a sport in itself. We seem to be fine watching it, but unfortunately, this is not done as we would never want to play this sport ourselves and never want our progeny to play it either.

Then why indulge in making it a sport for these sportsmen? Let them just play the game they are skilled at.