Sport is probably as old as the humanity itself. It has been developing with the developing and growth of the mankind. All over the world people of different ages are very fond of sports and games. Sport not only helps people to become strong and to develop physically but also makes them more organized and better disciplined in their daily activities. It makes for a healthy mind in a healthy body. Sports help people to keep in good health.
We all need to exercise. Even if you don’t plan to make a career in sport you still have to practice. Regular exercises give you more energy. That is why many people who suffer from general tiredness should take more exercise than more rest. Exercise makes you feel and look better. The best exercise is one which involves in repeated movements, those are: walking, jogging or swimming. Bending and stretching will add flexibility and feeling of lightness.

Among the sports popular in our-country are football, basketball, swimming, volleyball, ice hockey, tennis, gymnastics, figure skating. A person can choose sports and games for any season, for any taste.

1. Why is sport so important in our life?
2. Do all the people need exercise?
3 What should people who suffer from general tiredness do?
4. How does exercise change you?
5. What kind of exercise is the best?
6. What sports are popular in our country?

Спорту, наверное, столько же лет, сколько самому роду человеческому. Он развивался с развитием и ростом человечества. Во всем мире люди всех возрастов любят спорт и спортивные игры. Спорт не только помогает людям становиться сильнее и физически развиваться, но и делает их более собранными и организованными в их повседневной деятельности. Он поддерживает здоровый дух в здоровом теле. Спорт помогает людям сохранить крепкое здоровье. Нам всем нужно упражняться. Даже если вы не планируете делать карьеру спортсмена, вам необходимы тренировки. Регулярные упражнения придают вам больше энергии. Поэтому людям, страдающим общей усталостью, более необходимы физические нагрузки, чем отдых. Физические упражнения улучшают ваше самочувствие и внешний вид.
Самые лучшие упражнения — это те, которые содержат повторяющиеся движения; например, ходьба, бег или плавание. Наклоны и растяжка придадут вашему телу гибкость и чувство легкости.
Среди видов спорта, популярных в нашей стране, такие как: футбол, баскетбол, волейбол, плавание, хоккей, теннис, гимнастика, фигурное катание. Любой может выбрать спорт для любого времени года, на любой вкус.

Источник: 100 тем английского языка. Авторы Каверина В. Бойко В. Жидких Н.

Sports in Great Britain, the USA and Russia
The British like sport very much. They are fond of all kinds of sports. Many sports were invented in Great Britain and then spread throughout the world. Sports became popular long ago. In the 19-th century sport was organised at public schools so that young people could develop their physical abilities. But shortly afterwards the idea was borrowed by businessmen who started to organise football and other sports for their workers. From the 1960s commercial companies began to sponsor different British sports and activities. The national British sports are: football, golf, cricket, tennis, racing, darts. Like everyone else the British adore football. Moreover, the Englishmen invented it.
Nobody can say for sure when people started playing football on the British Isles. It is important however, that current uniform rules of the game were settled only in the 19-th century. At that time there was a great debate, whether one could use his hand to kick the ball or not. Those who wanted to permit the players to carry the ball with their hands united to form rugby. Rugby is played by teams of 15 men with an oval ball. Those who insisted on playing with feet and head only had the majority and that was the beginning of football as everybody knows it today. In Great Britain and more often in the United States football is called soccer to distinguish the game from American football, the game that has much in common with rugby.
Soccer, played almost in all countries, remains one of the most popular games in Great Britain. Each team consists of field players and one goalkeeper. Only the goalkeeper is permitted to take the ball into his hands. The game lasts for 90 minutes with a 15 minute break between two halves 45 minutes each. Most British towns and cities have a football team. Every year, each team in England plays in the Football Association competition. The two best teams play in the Cup Final at Wembley Stadium in London. It is one of the biggest sporting events of the year.
Another traditional British game is cricket. Unlike football cricket is not widely spread outside the British Isles. Cricket is a summer game, it is played in schools, colleges, universities. Cricket is a very long and a very slow game. There are two teams. Each team consists of eleven men. The «bowler» throws the ball, and a «batsman» hits it with his bat.
Tennis is also very popular in Britain. Two different games that do not have much in common bear the name of tennis — lawn tennis and table tennis. Both games first appeared in England, but today the British prefer lawn tennis to table tennis. Every summer, in June, the biggest tournament in the world takes place at Wimbledon. This world centre of lawn tennis is located in a suburb of London. Millions of people watch the Wimbledon Championship on TV. Table tennis originated in England in 1880. But the British players are not lucky in table tennis international championships.
Englishmen like all kinds of racing. Horseracing, motorcar racing, boat racing, dog-racing, donkey racing are very popular in England. The most famous boat racing in England is between Oxford and Cambridge. It first started in 1820 and has been held almost every spring since 1836. A lot of people come to watch this competition between England’s leading universities.
Americans are interested in different sports and activities. The major American sports are ice hockey, baseball, American football and basketball. The large choice of sports in America can be explained by the variety and size of the country, its different climates and the people’s love of competitions of any type. The seasons of the «four major sports» often overlap.
Baseball is the most popular summer sport in America. But the first baseball games start in warm, sunny regions like Florida and Arizona in winter. The first American baseball match was held in 1839 in New York. There is an opinion that baseball comes from a much older game, played in Europe for many years. To play baseball, two teams of nine players are needed. The «pitcher» throws the ball, and the «batter» hits it with a bat. Americans start playing baseball young. There are «leagues» which children of eight can join. The top players become big stars.
Americans play most international sports, but they do not play football in the same way as the rest of the world. American football is a game that does not have much in common with soccer. The players can run with a ball, touch and push each other. The field is not traditional, and even the shape of the ball is different. American football players wear helmets on their heads, because the game is very dangerous. American football teams have eleven players.
Basketball was invented in the United States. A schoolteacher designed the rules for a game that his students could play indoors. There are only five players in a basketball team. Usually basketball players are very tall and they show that basketball can be exciting. Ice hockey is America’s favourite winter game. It is very fast. It can be dangerous and its players wear helmets too. Other sports and activities attract millions of participants and spectators in the USA. These are swimming, tennis, marathons, bowling, crosscountry skiing, skating, and badminton. Now triathlon is one of the most popular sports in the USA. Ч comprises swimming, bicycle racing and long-distance running.
Many sports are popular in Russia. There are many stadiums and public sports facilities here. Numerous national and international matches and competitions are regularly held in our country. They attract large numbers of fans. Most of the important games are shown on TV. Football is believed to be Russia’s favourite sport in summer, while many young people play ice hockey in winter. Our country has been successful in different sports, especially in ice hockey. During the Olympic Games the Russian athletes prove the reputation of Russia as world’s leading nation in sports. The national team of Russia has many times won the World Hockey Championships.
In Russia much attention is paid to organised sports and this shouldn’t overshadow the many sporting activities which are part of daily Russian life. School children spend their free time playing football, basketball and other sports. In winter many Russians go in for skiing and skating. There are many skating rinks in the cities.

Is sport popular in your country?
– Today there is widespread interest in sport in Russia.

What games do you play at school?
– During PT classes pupils play football, basketball, volleyball. Pupils also do many exercises that help them to keep fit. In winter schools organise skiing competitions.

What games are popular in Russia?
– Football, ice hockey and volleyball are sure to be the most popular games in Russia. A lot of fans go to the stadium to support their teams. When it is not possible to go to the stadium to support the favourite team people can watch competitions on TV. Television has made sports available to all. The emphasis on sports is evident in evening news programmes.

What football teams are popular in Russia?
– There are many good football teams in Russia. Moscow «Spartak» is the strongest and the most popular team in Russia. Thousands of «Spartak» supporters go to the stadium to see their team play. As for me, I prefer another Moscow team, «Locomotive.» There are good players in «Loco» and this team has a great potential. I am sure that soon «Loco» will take the place of «Spartak» as the nation’s champion.

What British football teams do you know?
– In Great Britain there are four football championships that are held separately: in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The best players are in England. Many football players from continental Europe come to play for English teams. I guess that today the strongest football team on the British Isles is Manchester «United», although London «Arsenal» and «Chelsea» as well as Blackburn «Rovers» are fearful rivals. Scotland is noted for its Glasgow «Rangers.»

Is football popular in the United States?
– Yes, it is. Football is extremely popular in the United States, but they have different rules of the game. The fact is that in the United States when they say football they mean American football, while European football is usually referred to as soccer. In the recent years soccer is gaining its popularity in the United States as well. In 1994 World Football Championship took place in the United States. Nevertheless in the United States soccer is especially popular among girls, while boys prefer sports that are more traditional for their country — American football, baseball and basketball.

Are you keen on sport?
– Although sport plays an important role in my life, I do not go in for it professionally. My choice of the sports depends upon the season. In summer I like to swim in the lakes and rivers and in winter I like to skate. Skating is a widespread activity among my friends. There are many skating rinks in our town. As for jogging I do it every morning all year round.

Is sport important for your family?
– Yes, it is. Our family is doing sports on the amateur level. My father is an avid chess player. My mother likes walking in the parks. My sister prefers to get fit at home. She has a lot of books and video-cassettes with instructions how to do home exercise programmes. Although I do not go in for sports, I am fond of such activities that allow me to keep fit at home. I prefer jogging. We also like to watch football, ice-hockey and tennis matches on TV.

What do American school and colleges use sports activities far?
– American schools and colleges use sports activities as a way of teaching social values. Among these are teamwork and sportsmanship. The average high school offers its students a great variety of sports, including rowing, wrestling, tennis and golf. That is why Americans have done well in many kinds of sports.

What is regarded as an ideal in the USA?
– Being intelligent and being good in sports are regarded as an ideal. There are many colleges that have excellent academic reputation and are also good in sports.

What worries professional American athletes today?
– Today sport becomes more and more professional. But it is possible to show high results only at a certain age. Many sportsmen have to terminate their professional career in their thirties. At present professional athletes are concerned with getting a good education that will allow them to find good jobs when their playing days are over.

Are there special «universities» for sports in the USA?
– There are no separate «universities» for sports in the USA. Everyone in America can participate in sports activities. Public sports facilities have always been available in great number for participants.

What is better watching sports or participating in sports?
Nowadays sport and recreation have become an important feature in the people’s life. But tastes differ and different people have different attitudes to sport and recreation. Some people prefer to watch different sports events, others choose to participate in them actively. Watching other people playing is a popular leisure activity. Large crowds attend numerous national and international occasions; millions watch them on television.
Among the most popular sports are football, hockey, basketball, tennis, and motor racing. Many people assemble to watch these competitions. World Football, Hockey and Basketball Championships attract people from all over the world who cover great distances in order to support their favourite team. Wimbledon Championship is the most important tournament of lawn tennis, while Grand Prix is the major motor racing competition. But of cause the most important sport event is the Olympiad that takes place every four years.
Most of the important games are shown on TV. In many countries there are special TV channels that broadcast sports programmes for 24 hours. The major sporting competitions, such as the Olympic games, are shown on the central TV channels attracting millions of people who can be thousands of kilometres away from the event. Popularity of sports differs from country to country. In Latin America football stadiums are always crowded, while the Russian fans are so disappointed with the poor performance of our football teams that many prefer not to watch the games even on TV.
I can not agree that it is good to disapprove of watching sports events and approve of participating in sports. The desire to follow the example of sports stars induces people to take up sports that they used to watch seriously. For example many young Russians are fond of playing football. Even if the Russian teams are far from being the best in the world, Brazilian, Italian and French players become the example that young people try hard to follow.
In the past decades people’s involvement in sport and recreation have grown considerably. Now there is a large variety of available opportunities and facilities. Sport is the best and the shortest way to health and fitness. Increasing number of people are involved today in activities that help them keep fit and enjoy life. Physical recreation tends to be informal and non-competitive and may include, for example, cycling, boating, jogging. Dancing has become a very popular recreation. Many Russians have started learning Latin American dances, such as samba, rumba, cha-cha-cha.
Sport and recreation facilities provided at schools and universities enable young athletes to develop their talents. In Russia schools and universities participate in sports tournaments, for example in football and basketball. Many facilities are made available by local clubs and parks. There are commercial facilities, which include bowling centres, skating rinks, tennis courts and riding stables.
According to the latest figures the most popular activity of all is walking. It is a well known fact that walking for an hour every day is more healthy than rare and irregular participation in any of the more active physical activities. To keep fit some people attend special classes or take part in aerobics or yoga, do some kind of weight training in a gym. Others play football, badminton, tennis.
Evidently participating in sports has more advantages than simply watching sports competitions. At the same time these two kinds of activities are tightly interconnected. Professional sport is important not only for the professional athletes, one of its missions is to propagandise and popularise sports activities on the everyday level. At the same time it is always an individual preference. And only the individual has the right to decide what is better for him. But whatever the choice is, the pleasure is undoubted.

Do you like to watch sports events on TV?
– Yes, of course. It is wonderful that television is bringing all kinds of sports to our homes. Sometimes I go to the stadium to watch a game, but more often I stay at home and watch matches on TV.

What sports do you prefer to watch?
– Football and tennis are my favourite sports. I try not to miss the most important football and lawn tennis tournaments and watch them on TV. The fact that I prefer to watch sports competitions on TV does not mean that I am lazy. Unfortunately, Russia is not the major football or tennis power. There is only one important tennis tournament that is held in Moscow — the Kremlin Cup, and the best football teams do not come to Moscow to play too often. Thus, if I want to see really good matches I shall either go abroad or watch TV. For example, in the summer of 2002 there was a World Football Championship that took place in Japan and Korea. Although it would have been nice to visit those countries, was the best possibility of seeing the strongest football teams play simply turning on the TV set.

Do you play football or tennis yourself?
– Yes, I do, although not very often. Several years ago I used to do tennis. Once I was even thinking of pursuing a professional career, but now all that is in the past. I prefer watching others play tennis to playing myself. As for football, I have been a football fan from my childhood. My grandfather was the first to teach me to play football. Since then thousands of times I have played football with my friends and classmates. I think that the best time for playing football is early autumn and late spring. After classes my friends and I go to the playing ground, take a ball and we can really play for hours. In summer my friends are out of Moscow, while the Russian winter does not induce to playing football.

Do you admire any athletes?
– Yes, I do. Eugeny Kafelnikov is my favourite tennis player. He is really good in tennis and ranks among the best tennis players of the world. Kafelnikov was the first Russian tennis player who managed to defeat the strongest Western athletes. I hope Eugeny will show excellent results for many years to come. I think that the example of Kafelnikov should inspire many young Russians to play tennis. As for football, I can not, unfortunately, say that there is a particular Russian player whom I admire. My favourite football player is Gabriel Batistuta. He is an Argentinean, but now he is playing in the Italian championship. He is a really gifted athlete, he loves football and makes thousands of fans adore him. At the same time he neither shows any pride nor demonstrates contempt for his fans. This is also very important. Batistuta serves me an example not only as a sportsman but as a personality too.

Do you have any friends who go in for sports professionally?
– Yes, I do. I have one friend who is doing professional tennis. We started to play tennis together. While I quitted, he continued to pursue a sport career. He works very hard under the supervision of his coach. He takes part in various competitions. He tries to achieve good results, but sometimes they are not perfect. In either case he is pretty sure that one day he will become a good tennis player. His dream is to play with Kafelnikov. My other friends do not take sport seriously. Just for fun they play football or badminton, and I think that they are right. Sport is good while there is not too much of it.

Keeping fit
The fitness boom of the past decades led to a big rise in the numbers of people participating in sports and activities. Those who pursue the latest fitness fashion are convinced that staying in good physical form requires much more than regular exercise and balanced meals. For anyone who really wants to be healthy, fitness has become an integral part of their lives. A lot of health and fitness clubs, and public leisure centres that were created in many countries indicate the popularity of sports during the past thirty years. These centres with their swimming pools, sunshine beach, water slides, and tropical plants and gyms are very popular among the people. Families can spend their holidays at huge indoor water parks. In such places everybody will have much fun.
There are many opportunities for keeping fit. First of all it is necessary to do exercises. People of different ages can design exercises that will fit them. Running, jumping, swimming, bending and stretching are among the most popular exercises. Many people prefer jogging, which is the cheapest and the most accessible sport. Walking is a very popular activity too. For example, popular running competitions are now held everywhere. Lots of people want to see if they can run faster than everyone else. The big city marathons have become sporting events. Television and newspapers report about them in detail. In order to keep fit some people do aerobics or yoga; others prefer some kind of weight training in a gym. People can easily learn more about fitness through popular books and videos that are sold almost everywhere. A healthy body becomes a fashion, an ideal of the life of today. Even moderate physical activity can protect against heart disease and strokes as well as improve general health and the quality of life. Everyone can benefit from being a little more active. Making small changes like using the stairs instead of the lift or walking or cycling instead of taking the bus can help people live a more active, healthier and enjoyable life. Many sports activities have become part of daily Russian life. Football has always been the most popular sport among boys. Playing football is healthy; football also brings people close because in order to win people have to work as a team. Bicycling is very popular in Russia. Skiing, skating, fishing and hunting are wide spread in our country. In summer many people like to go to the bank of the river on a hot day to swim. Another activity that is popular in our country is roller-skating. Today it has reached its peak in our country. At present the lack of facilities make enthusiasts use city pavements or parking lots.
Unfortunately, many people do not take enough exercise to keep themselves healthy. According to the statistics nowadays 60 percent of men and 91 percent of women are below activity levels necessary for a fit and healthy life. Many men and women are overweight.

Why are people concerned with the healthy way of life nowadays?
– Everybody wants to live a long healthy life. Unfortunately, now it has become a dream. Because of the contaminated environment people suffer a lot of diseases. And the best way to be healthy is to do sports. Doing exercises is the best way to avoid depression caused by the abnormal rhythm of the contemporary city life.

Do you do anything for keeping fit?
– I get up very early. Every morning I do my morning exercises. It takes me forty-five minutes to do them. Once a week I go to the swimming pool. On Sundays if the weather is fine I like to ride a bicycle in the park.

Do you think that good appearance is the only motivation of being fit?
– Keeping fit is something that a person does alone. It is nice to look young and stay healthy as long as possible. Families can spend their free time jogging, walking, or swimming together. Some families like to get out of their city into the countryside. They can have much fun in the forests, or on the bank of a lake or a river. Just for fun they make boat trips or fish. Very often families spend their free time at huge indoor water parks, where they can play or relax. But this may not help them to get fitter. They simply enjoy being together.

What may help people to get fitter?
– Taking exercise is only one part of keeping fit. It is important to get slim. Books and magazines about slimming are best sellers today. Some people eat nothing but fruit for several days. But it won’t be of any use without proper exercises. Besides to avoid serious disease one should give up smoking. Efforts should be made to inform young people of the terrible consequences of taking up the habit. Smoking should be banned in all public places.

Sports in our life.

Sport is very important in our life. It is popular among young and old people. Many people do morning exercises, jog in the morning, train in clubs and different sections. Other people like sport too; they only watch sports game on TV and listen the sports news. Whey prefers reading interesting stores about sports men but they do not go in for sports.
Physical training is an important subject in school. Pupils have physical training twice a week. Boys and girls play volleyball and basketball at the lessons. There is a sport ground near our school and school children go in for sports in the open air. A lot of different competitions are held at school. A great number of pupils take part in them. All participants try to get good results and become winner.
Sport helps people to keep in good health. If you go in for sports you don’t catch cold. Children and grown-ups must take care of they health and do morning exercises regularly. There are some popular kinds of sport in our country: football, volleyball, hockey, gymnastics, skiing and other. Athletic is one of the most popular kinds of sport. It includes running, jamming and others.
My favorite sport is swimming. I go to the swimming pool twice a week. I prefer to rest by the lake or river and swim there. My friend goes in for boxing. He is a good boxer. His hobby helps him in his every day life.


I you want to feel fit you’d better go in for one kind of sport or another. I should admit that everyone must do all he can to be healthy. Good health is better than the best medicine. «You have a sound mind in a sound body» as the old Latin saying goes. The English proverb «Sickness in the body brings sickness to the mind» expresses a similar idea but from different point of view. All kinds of physical exercises are very useful to make our bodies strong and to keep ourselves fit and healthy. To tell the truth I don’t do sports regularly and it is not an essential part of my daily life. In the morning I do some exercises just to awake. Then some aerobics for myself. It puts me into the fine moods. In summer I go swimming as there is a beautiful river with pure water where my Granny lives. In winter, it’s rather long at our place, I should say, I prefer skiing (There is nothing like the sight of a winter forest — a real fairy-tale). I like to ride the bike and toboganning in winter. Mum says that I’m to old to do it, why not after all? I shouldn’t call myself a sports fan. Of course , I like to watch sports competitions on TV . Fortunately , they show different ones — football , basketball . I like tennis tournaments very much . I think , it’s a very intelligent kind of sport for clever thinking people . Also I admire skiing championships , biathlon , swimming . But what I like most is basketball . The best games are viewed on TV. I came to know that modern basketball appeared in 1891 in the USA. The originator, John Naismith was a coach at the college. He invented the baskets and the rules of the game. Since then basketball has be become very popular and is spread all over the world. It is the sport of strong tall men, the sport of giants.
Doing sports a man become strong, healthy and gay. He begins to take care of his health.
«Good health is better than wealth», you know. It’s true, I should say. In our school we have a nice gym. Sports and games are popular among pupils. A lot of children train at special sport schools.