Which city is the sports capital of the world?

Melbourne in Victoria, Australia, is frequently chosen and acknowledged as the sporting capital of the world. Melbourne is second biggest city in Australia but were chosen the sporting capital of the decade in 2016. The people of Melbourne are actually sports crazy and it doesn’t matter just what the sport is, the crowds in the city turn out for it.

So why is Melbourne the sports capital and how did it get to be the sports capital? First of all, the city has a rich sporting history and culture. The city was established in 1835 and sport was a feature of city lifestyle right from then, with the Melbourne Cricket Club (MCC) being formed in 1838. The now prominent Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) opened in 1853. It’s still there and is now the premier sports arena in the country. Different kinds of football grew to become also popular in Melbourne’s formative years, in due course bringing about its own sport – Australian Rules Football, or ‘footy’ as it’s called by the local people. The very first Melbourne Cup horse race took place in 1861 and is still going. The initial Australian tennis championships took place in 1905 and is still held there. Melbourne put on the 1956 Olympics.

Community sports activity is really a considerable part of the the cities life style and involvement rates in the city are probably the highest globally. This is easily witnessed each and every weekend you will see just how prominent local community sporting activities is with people actively taking part and enjoying a variety of sporting activities for example cricket, tennis, footy, rugby, netball, basketball, baseball, golf as well as soccer. They play an important part of so many people’s community lives and health and fitness. When people in Melbourne aren’t playing sport, they are fans of viewing sport. The Australian Football League grand final draws 100 000 fans to the MCG. Rugby Union is not a well-known or a common sport in the city, but Melbourne stills hold the world record for the highest number of fans to go to see a game live!

Along with the 1956 Olympic Games, Melbourne continues to host world class sports entertainment. Every year, there is the F1 Australian Grand Prix, the Australian Open Tennis Grand Slam, the Spring Horse racing Carnival, the MotoGP, the Boxing Day cricket international game along with the Rip Curl Pro surfing competition. There are the major AFL, National Rugby League, or Australian A-League (soccer) matches on most weekends. There have recently been other major one-off events like the Commonwealth Games, the Cricket World Cup, World swimming championships and also Asian Cup soccer.

All of this is backed up by lots of first class sports stadiums including the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre, Melbourne Park, Rod Laver Arena, AAMI Park, Hisense Arena, Etihad Stadium, Flemington Racecourse, State Netball and Hockey Centre, Margaret Court Arena and the Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit and that is an infrastructure which is not close to being surpassed by any other location in the world. It is easy to see how and the reason why Melbourne is considered the sporting capital of the world and exactly why sports activity is such a part of the way of life around Australia.

More children suffer head injuries playing recreational sport than team sport

Study finds children who do recreational sports like bike riding are more likely to suffer serious head injuries than children who play contact sport like AFL or rugby.

Media Release:

An Australian/ New Zealand study examining childhood head injuries has found that children who do recreational sports like horse riding, skate boarding and bike riding are more likely to suffer serious head injuries* than children who play contact sport like AFL or rugby.

Research**, conducted by the PREDICT research network, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI), published on Wiley and soon to be published in the Australian Medical Journal, examined the data of 8,857 children presenting with head injuries to ten emergency departments in Australian and New Zealand hospitals.

A third of the children, who were aged between five and 18 years, injured themselves playing sport. Of these children four out of five were boys.

Lead research author, MCRI’s Professor Franz Babl, says the team looked at ‘íntracranial’ injuries in children because while there is a lot of interest about sport and concussion, less is understood about the severity of head injuries children suffer while playing sport.

“The study found that in children who presented to the emergency departments after head injury and participated in recreational sports like horse riding, skate boarding and bike riding were more likely to sustain serious head injuries than children who played contact sport like AFL, rugby, soccer or basketball,” he says.

“We found that 45 of the 3,177 sports-related head injuries were serious and classified as clinically important Traumatic Brain Injury (ciTBI), meaning the patient required either neuro-surgery, at least two nights in hospital and/or being placed on a breathing machine. One child died as a result of head injuries.”

Prof Babl says that the sports which resulted in the most frequent reason for presentation to emergency departments included bike riding (16 per cent), rugby (13 per cent), AFL (10 per cent), other football (9 per cent), and soccer (8 per cent).

The most frequent causes of serious injury included bike riding (44 per cent), skateboarding (18 per cent), horse riding (16 per cent), with AFL and rugby resulting in one serious head injury each and soccer resulting none.

A total of 524 patients with sports-related head injuries (16 per cent) needed CT imaging, and 14 children required surgery.

What is Aussie Rules Football?

aussie rules

Australian Rules Football is the main sporting code played in Australia and it is big business. All the players are professionals and considerable money is involved in the game. It was first played in 1858.

The objective of Aussie Rules is to outscore the other team in total points. These points are tallied by summing the main goal (worth 6 factors) scored, and also the behinds (worth 1 factor) added up. A goal is scored by kicking [punting] the ball (comparable to a Football) through 2 upright blog posts. The ball has to come off the foot of a player. So no throwing or punching it with– it has to be kicked through. A behind is scored if the ball is touched by any individual, or is kicked through the smaller sized articles on either side of the goal messages.

The ball can be moved around the ground by either: running with it, kicking [punting] the ball, or handpassing (punching with a closed fist). Tossing or throwing the ball is not allowed..

A player running with the ball remains in open play. He may be tackled with by any person from the opposing team. A tackle with generally implies finishing up the player on the ground, like in rugby, but can be like a great ole American-style ‘hit’. If a player is tackled, he needs to make an instant effort to throw away the round (legitimately– no tossing currently). If he hangs on to the ball throughout a tackle (like as in rugby), he is considered ‘holding the ball’ and the tackler gets a free kick. Currently, on the other hand, it is illegal to deal with a player without the ball. So, if a player does get rid of the ball during a tackle, the tackler has to promptly release.

A player can kick the ball in any direction (but of course, the objective is to get it to your goal). If a player from either team marks [gets] the ball from a kick, he might take an un-obstructed kick from that spot.

The other method of passing the ball is to handpass, or punch, the ball. However unlike noting [getting] a kicked round, receiving a handpass does not give you an un-obstructed free-kick.

Australian Rules Football is the main sporting code played in Australia and it is big business. All the players are professionals and considerable money is involved in the game.

One thing that the AFL really is seen as a model around the world is the involvement of sports medicine and sports science in the way its used to get the best out of each player. Even Podiatrists in the AFL are recognized as a model of their involvement with professional sports teams.