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Sporting Goods Production Workers

History

Throughout history, every society and culture has developed games and sports for relaxation and competition. Bowling, for example, has been around for centuries; a stone ball and nine stone pins were found in the ancient tomb of an Egyptian child. Polo is believed to have originated in Asia and was brought back to England and America by British officers returning from India in the 1800s. Native American peoples played lacrosse with webbed sticks and hard wooden balls centuries ago. Soccer, arguably the world's most popular sport, was invented in England, where a version of the game was played nearly 2,000 years ago.

Some of the most popular sports in America have a relatively recent history. Basketball was invented in 1891 by Dr. James Naismith in Springfield, Massachusetts; its popularity grew so quickly that it became an Olympic event in 1936. Ice hockey as we know it was invented in Canada in the 1870s. It quickly became popular in northern countries and was inaugurated as an Olympic sport in 1920. In the 1870s, football started as a college sport that mixed elements of soccer and rugby and soon developed its own set of rules. Although folklore attributes the invention of baseball to Abner Doubleday in 1839, people were playing it for many years before then.

Some games, both ancient and modern, have changed little since the time they were first played. Soccer, for instance, has remained popular in part because of its simplicity; the only equipment needed to play is a ball. Other sports have grown to require more elaborate equipment. Modern technology has been applied to many aspects of sport and given us such improvements as better protective padding, livelier tennis rackets, and stronger golf balls. Computers are used to improve the design and composition of sports gear. The equipment used in each sport is unique in design and manufacture and is put together by skilled specialists.

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