The "Original" Four Sports: What America Has Sadly Moved On From

Taylor RummelSenior Analyst IJuly 28, 2009

As a society, we are constantly changing.


Cavemen built clubs, and used their counterparts as test-subjects.


In the Roman Empire, coliseums were built for men to compete against each other, and allowed for fandom to ignite.


During the Medieval Age, jesters filled the scene and provided entertainment for all. Shakespeare thereafter wowed audiences with his story-telling and "play-making ability"…literally.


More recently, in the 1960s and '70s, times were good. Life was, for the most part, care-free. Days were filled with kids playing in yards, neighbors conversing regardless of mutual-likeness, and of course who could forget those Beatles?


Time in between was spent living, laughing, and loving. Even more than those actions were present at sporting events. But the biggest sports back then weren't football, basketball, MMA, and hockey.


Rather they were baseball, golf, tennis, and boxing. All of which were comparatively slow-paced games that had an audience equally as patient. No one in that day-in-age was in a rush to purchase a new video-game, nor was anybody scurrying to check their email.


We could let things come to us, instead of us forcing the issue.


All of the extra time enabled humans to actually have a moment to spare; allowing them to view one of those sports, despite their ability to elicit a snooze or two.


Additionally, great figures like Joe DiMaggio and Ted Williams, Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer, Bjorn Borg and Billie Jean-King, and Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier were born and cherished because of their marvelous ability at these now interest-deprived sports.


Nowadays though, sadly, we have no time to truly appreciate those heroic-figures, or the sports that they dominated. I mean, who wants to, or has the time to, walk 18 holes, or see back-and-forth action that lasts for hours, or see games with less "scores" than hours attended, (baseball)?


I know I don't—and can’t; way too boring for me. Not nearly enough action to suit my fancy or grasp my attention or interest.


So, have sports lost hope? Of course not! Say hello to the 21st Century people. We have laptops, email, cell phones, iPods, MySpace, Twitter, Facebook, MMA, and PDAs.


No more carrier pigeons, or letters, or landlines, or tape-recorders…or time to kill.


We have ability with our fingertips; the potential to check and change in the matter of seconds. Need to make a late fantasy addition to your team before your roster locks?—Easy as ever with any phone.


How about listening to your favorite tune?—Just swap out your iPod and jam away.


The concept of ‘speed’ has taken over the world—whether it is for the better or worse.


Mentioned before was the shift of the four "power" sports. No longer do baseball, golf, tennis, and boxing dominate the sport’s scene. Instead, basketball, football, MMA, and hockey replace and rejuvenate the athletic-side of the world.


They all involve nearly non-stop action; only halting when it is virtually impossible to continue. As fans we like that, since it complements our lifestyles. We are familiar with quick actions, responses, and movements, and these sports—that seemingly fail to stop—find favor with those involved: with us.


As inhabitants of this growing and fast-changing world, we find it necessary to load ourselves up with too tough a task, too tedious a job, and too stressful a commitment. We barely have enough time to breathe, let alone attend—and enjoy—one of the four major sporting events of the past.


But this article is to help remember how "sports" in America truly got started. "The roots that helped form the plant," if you will.


The world today may be moving forward—on a seemingly trepid and torrid pace—but those sports will remain in our hearts and minds forever.