Tuesday, January 25, 2011
History Of Lawn Bowls
Lawn bowling, or “bowling on the green,” is an outdoor game that has fascinated both young and old for centuries. The actual origin of the game is hidden in the haze of antiquity. We do, however, have authentic records of well over seven hundred years of bowling history.
Sculptured vases and ancient plaques show the game being played some four thousand years ago, and archaeologists have uncovered biased stone bowls from 5,000 B.C. which indicate our ancestors enjoyed the game of bowling more than seven thousand years ago.
When Caesar rules Rome, the game was known as “Bocce,” and the conquering Roman Legions may well have carried the game to Europe and the British Isles. By the thirteenth century, bowling had spread to France, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Germany, and England.
Bowling was so well established in England by 1299 A.D. that a group of players organized the Southhamptom Old Bowling Green Club, the oldest established bowling club in the world that is still active. The game became so popular in England and in France it was prohibited by law because archery, essential to the national defense, was being neglected. The French king, Charles IV, prohibited the game for the common people in 1319, and King Edward III issued a similar edict in England in 1361.
The American Scene
Lawn bowling appears to have been introduced into the American colonies in the1600s, although archaeologists have uncovered biased stone bowls, now in a museum at Vancouver, B.C. which indicate that a similar game was played be the North American Indians centuries before this. Bowling greens were recorded in Boston in 1615, New Amsterdam, as New York was then called, and not long afterwards in Washington and Virginia.
Bowling at Mount Vernon
In 1726 George Washington’s father, Augustus, took over management of the family estate at Mount Vernon, and in 1732, the year George was born, constructed the bowling green. At this time the game was highly favored as a genteel pastime by the ranking officers of the British Colonial Army, and the green at Mt. Vernon was undoubtedly very popular. George grew up with the game, became an avid bowler in his youth, and apparently this love of the game was never lost. He kept the green busy through the years. By 1754 he had come into his inheritance and settled down with Martha. They kept up the family tradition of sponsoring bowling on the green as “suitable for the intelligentia and ranking army officers.” The game abruptly lost its popularity during the Revolution. On July 4, 1776, with the Declaration of Independence, the Colonies were rent apart. Those still loyal to the British Crown fled to Canada, were imprisoned or killed, and their property confiscated. This wartime hysteria swept all thing British with it, including bowling greens. Greens were plowed up, converted to camp grounds, planted with flowers or trees, and hidden as much as possible. At Mount Vernon the abandoned green was planted with young full grown trees described as a rugged type of magnolia. One of these trees, “The Washington magnolia,” planted in the garden entrance to the bowling green is reputed to be hale and hearty today. Apparently all local records went too, as our national archives had no record of bowling activity for this period until our first edition. Recent research by the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association of the Union record authentic maps which date back to 1726, locate the bowling green, and confirm our previous reports.
Canadians Preserve the Sport
To the Canadians we owe the preservation of Bowling on the Green in America. With peace, the game spread across the continent to Vancouver, and grew in popularity. In time, friendly games across the border began, and eventually old animosities were forgotten.
There is a certain magic in this game that builds lasting friendships, and Bowls has done a lot to cement the friendly relations that now exist between Canada and the United States. The game was not revived in the United States until 1879 when a bowler named Shepplin started a small private club in New Jersey. Soon this expanded to a second club and in 1885 the Middlesex Bowling Green Club was officially organized. New clubs appeared in Boston, and soon bowling greens were once again flourishing along the eastern seaboard. Fourteen years passed before the first West Coast club was formed. In 1899 the St. Andrews Society of San Francisco and Oakland combined to construct the first bowling green in the West in Golden Gate Park.
The first Southern California lawn bowling club was formed in Los Angeles about 1908, and today there are more than thirty active clubs and many private greens in this area.
Lawn Bowling is an outdoor game in which a ball (known as a bowl) is rolled toward a smaller stationary ball, called a jack. The object is to roll one's bowls so that they come to rest nearer to the jack than those of an opponent. This is sometimes achieved by knocking aside an opponent's bowl or the jack.
Bowls is generally played on a flat lawn, about 40-42 yards square. The green is divided into six rectangular sections, or rinks, each of which is about 18-21 feet wide. The bowls are also called woods, but they may be made of rubber, wood, or some other thing-a-ma-jigger. Bowls measure from 4 3/4 to 5 3/4 inches in diameter and have a maximum weight of 1.5 kg. They are black or brown in color.
They are also flattened on one side, so that they follow a curved course when rolled. The jack is white in color, weighs 0.2 to 0.3 kg, and has a diameter of 2 1/2 inches. Players roll their bowls from a rubber mat of 24 by 14 inches. To begin play, a jack is rolled to the opposite side of the rink, and it becomes the target so long as it stops at least 25 yards (23 m) from the delivery mat. Players then bowl in turn. In singles and doubles games, each player uses four bowls; in triples, every player has three bowls; and in fours, or rink games, two bowls per player are used. When all of the bowls have been thrown, an end is said to be complete. In scoring, all the bowls of one team nearer the jack at the finish of an end than the nearest bowl of the opposing team count for one point each. A game consists of 21 points in pairs or fours, and 18 points in triples. There is no prescribed number of points in singles matches, but the usual number played is 21.
History Of Ice Hockey
The history of ice hockey is far older than the pucks we know today, but the general culture of ice hockey as we know it, most probably starts with English soldiers playing a kind of field hockey on ice in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. The basic instinct to hit a ball with a stick is seen developed in isolated cultures all over the world, doing it on ice however restricted to colder climates, is still older than the first pucks. Pucks were first recorded as being used in Ontario at the Kingston Harbor in 1860 (from the verbs “to hit” or “to strike” in Hurley). To give an exact person, place or event would be a very personal history of ice hockey; and just as everyone has their favorite team, we all have our favorite version of “the facts” as well as philosophies about what it means to play. But one thing people can’t argue with is exactly where and how the very first “indoor” ice hockey match occurred, as it seems to be where our gladiator culture emerged.
March 30, 1875 at Montreal’s Victoria Skating Rink the first indoor hockey match was organized by James Creighton, an ice Hurley player (considered by some the father of ice hockey) was from Halifax and studying engineering at McGill University in Montreal at the time. Nine man sides were used and the “field” of ice was 80ft by 204ft. Creighton’s team managed to win the game with 2-1, and most importantly, our ice gladiator sport was born! Yes! The game ended in one of the greatest fights ever seen. The wire dispatch from Kingston’s Daily British Whig in Montreal reported the following “Shins and heads were battered, benches smashed, and the lady spectators fled in confusion,” that definitely sounds like ice hockey!
We may not be able to agree between ourselves on any one place or time where ice hockey first appeared in the world, but the culture of indoor ice hockey we now see all over the world seems to have been born with the need for speed and exercise. Pucks are naturally a part of this culture and symbols of our loyalties. The word puck can be traced back to “pouke” in the 1300’s with the Old English meaning of “devil” or “evil spirit” and later the verb “to poke”. Shakespear’s Mr. Robin Goodfellow. The “Puck” was a mischievous Satyre spirit in “A Midsummer Night's Dream” who is constantly getting into trouble, by “poking people the wrong way” if you may.
Ice Hockey Rules and Regulations
The Playing Area
The playing area or rather the surface is practically a thin ice sheet, known as the rink. The rink has to be divided in several zones by a red line at center ice and 2 blue lines. Now, as far as the measurements are concerned, the usual North American rink is 200 feet by 85 feet. These are larger when it comes to European ice hockey surfaces. The rink has to be enclosed by boards and plexiglas. To tell you more about the zones, each ice surface according to the basic ice hockey rules are divided into 3 zones. The defending zone is where the goal net is located, for the team which has to defend that goal. Then, there are 2 blue lines in the middle of the rink and in between them is what is called as the neutral zone. Finally the area where a team has to attack, the opponent's goal, it is called attacking zone. Read more on who invented ice hockey.
Teams and Players
There are 6 players of a team in the rink, including the goaltender. The others are skaters. The five play as forwards and defensemen. The ice hockey rules and positions are that there are 3 forwards and 2 defensemen. Only the goaltender cannot move from his place, otherwise all the other 5 are permitted to move anywhere in the rink. In addition to that, the goaltender cannot cross the line, the center ice red line, dividing the rink into half. The game can only begin once the referee drops the puck between the 2 forwards from opposing teams. This face off is also used to resume the play if it is obstructed midway. A game has 3 periods of 20 minute each, as per the ice hockey rules. If at the end of these 60 minutes, the teams are tied, there is a sudden death, that is overtime. The team scoring first here is declared the winner.
Those who do not obey the rules are penalized. One of the most common amongst them is that a player is sent off. It is a major penalty and the player is sent off for 5 minutes. A player can be sent off in case he is involved in a fight with another player. Elbowing, kneeing, checking from behind and roughing are other reasons of giving a player a penalty. Usage of stick, in a dangerous way, like hooking, tripping, slashing, spearing, etc calls for penalization. In case of a minor penalization, a player is sent off the rink for a couple of minutes. Moreover, if a goal is scored, the penalty immediately comes to and end.
History of rowing
Rowing has been around for centuries, and will stay among the best of competitive sports around the world.
The technique of affixing the oar to the side of the boat was discovered by the Greeks approximately two thousand years ago. They discovered that working a single oar against a fulcrum was much more useful and effective than a paddle. Rowing was primarily used to transport goods, but when there was more than one boat in the water, human nature took over and racing started.
Professional racers made a decent living in the late 1800's, but gambling on races led to the popular sport's demise. But in America and England, amateur rowers developed popularity in inter-collegiate competitions. The first Oxford/Cambridge race was held in 1829. The first Harvard/Yale race was held in 1852, and is the oldest inter-collegiate event in America.
Many scientific advancements were then made in the sport; a better boat was a faster boat. For example, the ancient Greeks, when rowing, sat on seats that slid to allow them to use their legs to drive the boat. Harvard rowers found a way to grease their pants so that they slid on their immobile seats. This allowed them to dominate Yale because they were still using only the fixed seats. This led to the popular use of sliding seats in today's shells.
Boat clubs started in America in the 1800's. Philadelphia's Schuylkill Navy, begun in 1858, was the first rowing association and the first amateur sports organization. Collegiate and amateur oarsmen started the National Association for Amateur Oarsmen (NAAO) in 1872. Women were left out in these clubs, even though they rowed in amateur and collegiate races also. In the early 1960's the National Women's Rowing Association was formed. Finally, in 1982, the NAAO and the National Women's Rowing Association joined together to become the co-ed United States Rowing Association.
RULES AND REGULATIONS
See General Regulation
The OUA operating season for rowing:
a. The formal start of the season shall be September 1st
b. Training camps may commence nine days prior to Labour Day
c. University coaches are not prohibited from coaching university athletes at a club
between May 30th and September 1st,
The P.C. Fitz-James Trophy - Presented to the overall Men's team champion.
The Mrs. W. Lathrop Challenge Trophy - Presented to the overall Women's team champion.
OUA Gold, Silver and Bronze Medals shall be awarded to the winning crew members and
coxswains in all events in the Championship Regatta.
OUA Banners shall be awarded to the institution winning the Men’s and Women’s team
The Convenor shall receive no later than five (5) days prior to the Championship:
i) A listing of events to be entered
ii) The names of individual crew members in each event, with their appropriate student
iii) The names of the spares designated for each crew entry and
iv) All eligibility sheets must be in the hands of the Regatta Chair/Convenor five
(5) days prior to the championship.
For the OUA Championship Regatta, the minimum complement of officials shall be: two
certified Canadian Rowing Referees in separate boats, two Starters and two Finish Judges.
A member institution may field crews in events of its choice. It shall not be necessary to be
represented in all events.
Institutions are allowed to substitute up to 50% of the designated crew from the spare list
provided for that event. A single spare may be listed for singles events.
The rules shall be the regatta rules of Rowing Canada Aviron.
The following events shall be held at the Championship Regatta:
Men's and Women's Lightweight & Heavyweight 8+ coxed
Men's and Women's Lightweight & Heavyweight 4+ coxed
Men's and Women's Lightweight & Heavyweight double
Men's and Women's Lightweight & Heavyweight single
LIGHTWEIGHT - The maximum weight of any member of a Men's Crew shall not exceed 159.5 lbs
(72.5 kg) and the Women's, not to exceed 129.8 lbs (59 kg).
Each coxswain must weigh in and meet the standards as established by Rowing Canada
Aviron Rules and Regulations.
The term crew refers to all members, including cox. In order to compete in a race, the crew
must have a full complement.
Each competitor shall be permitted to compete in a MAXIMUM of two (2) events at the
Universities shall enter one crew only in each event at the Championship Regatta.
The team quota shall be 34 for both Men and Women.
The distance of each race in the Championship Regatta shall be 2,000 metres.
Championship Scoring - for the declaration of Men's and Women's champions, team
points will be calculated as follows:
In the event of a tie, the team with the most first place finishes shall be the winner. If a tie still
exists, it will then be determined by second place finishes, then third, then fourth, etc., until a tie
In the event there are only three or less entries in any event, the number of points awarded will
be reduced by using the bottom half of the points system.
Eg. Men’s Lightweight Eight – 3 entrie
All races shall be run at fifteen (15) minute intervals from the start of each race unless otherwise
determined by the OUA Rowing Convenor.The official weigh-in shall be held the morning of the Championship Regatta.
Weigh-ins will be held using a digital scale. The official scales for the Saturday weigh-in shall be available for one hour, at a convenient time on Friday evening to allow athletes to check their weigh.
In the event an entry in a Heat scratches at the last minute creating a row over, the number of
boats to qualify for the Final shall be reduced such that one crew shall be eliminated in order to
ensure that all crews in heats have to race to qualify for the Final. For example, in a four boat
heat with three to qualify, the number to qualify for the Final shall be reduced to two boats if
only three boats race the heat.
In the event of seven entries a seven boat final can be operated, if the Championship venue
has seven lanes. Otherwise, one heat of 3 and one heat of 4 will be drawn and the slowest time
(boat) from all 7 entries will be eliminated and 6 boats progress to the final.
The origins of Handball are a subject of great debate. One view is that it was invented in Germany, back in the late 19th century, as an outdoor sport to keep soccer players fit during the summer months. Outdoor Handball involved 11 players on each side and was played on a virtually fullsize turf soccer ground with soccer goals. It was mainly played with soccer rules, except it was played with the hands and kicking the ball was illegal rather than the other way round. However, there are records of handballstyle games going back to antiquity. The sport was depicted on a tombstone carving in Athens dated 600BC. The first match of the modern era was officially recorded on 29 October 1917 in Berlin, Germany. Outdoor Handball had its only Olympic Games appearance in the XIth Olympiad (1936 Berlin Games). The first international match recorded was played on 3 September 1925 with Germany defeating Austria, 6:3.
The sport's international governing body was first formed in 1928 as the Federation Internationale Handball Amateur, and took its current name in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1946 as the International Handball Federation (IHF). The IHF's first president was Avery Brundage an American who went on to become president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
Indoor Handball was invented in the 1940s in Denmark. This is a 7aside game, played on a court slightly larger than a basketball court with smaller goals than its outdoor counterpart. Again, this sport flourished in the Germanic nations where it was hoped that it would appeal to a wider audience. With rules from other sports like basketball being introduced, this made the game simpler to play and more exciting to watch. The fact that it became a winter sport added to the spectator appeal being away from the cold, seated in comfort, with more action and excitement and higher scores than soccer. The sport is now played all over the world and was reintroduced as an Olympic event for the XXth Olympiad (1972 Munich Games).
Handball has always been a sport dominated by the European nations. In its formative years as an outdoor game, Germany, Austria and Denmark dominated in the international sphere, even though not many other nations outside Europe were playing the game.
After World War II, and the introduction of the indoor game, the Eastern Europeans quickly become competitive and were soon dominating the sport. Nations like the Soviet Union, Romania, Yugoslavia, East Germany and Hungary were regularly in the top three in most of the male and female international competitions. Only Sweden showed any significant resistance to the Eastern Bloc.
With the conclusion of the cold war and the collapse of the Eastern Bloc alliance, many of these nations suffered a temporary economic downturn which effected some of the national teams to lose the winning edge and a number of prominent players and coaches migrating to the west. Countries like France, Spain and Germany began to dominate. Some African (Algeria and Egypt) and Asian (South Korea and China) nations started to make an impact on the international competitions (especially the Olympics) in the late 1980s early 1990s.
The indoor game is now the more popular of the two types of handball. The outdoor variety is rarely played these days mainly for special occasions or by purists.
In recent years, a new outdoor version has emerged called Beach Handball, played naturally on the sands of a beach. This variety is now recognised by the IHF and now has formal rules.
Handball is now played on every habitable continent on this planet. It is estimated that about 7 million players are registered with a club. Many of the European clubs are professional and professional clubs in Asia (in South Korea, China and Japan) are becoming established and are considered as very competitive on the international stage. Africa, Americas and Oceania (our region) mainly comprise of amateur clubs but are very enthusiastic.
The UK has a small but thriving community of handball clubs in most parts of the country, and welcomes participation by members of both sexes and of all ages.
Rules And Regulations
The Court: As per the rules laid down by the International Handball Federation (IHF), the dimensions of the playing court should be 40 meter by 20 meter. That means that is a 40 meter long 20 meter wide rectangle. It has two goal areas and a single playing area. There is a compulsory safety zone on the periphery of the playing court, having a width of at least 1 meter along the sidelines and around 2 meters behind the goal lines. Longer boundary lines are the sidelines and lines between the goal posts are called the goal lines. Each goal in the playing area is marked by a 6 meter goal area, joined by a tangent at the center. The goals need to have net, attached in a way that it does not let the ball move out. The goal posts and crossbar need to have 8 cm square cross section. The rules of handball also permit a difference in the color of lines between two adjacent areas of the floor. Outside the goal line, there is another arc, 9 meters from the posts. This is called the free throw line and is normally dashed. For restart, there is the halfway line with a center dot. Thanks to Olympics, some of us know the nitty gritties of handball.
The Players: On the whole, there are 7 players on the field and 7 players are substitutes. So from one team there cannot be more than 14 players. On the field, there are six players and 1 goal keeper from a team. At the start of the play, according to the handball rules and regulations laid down by the IHF, a minimum of 5 players should be on the field. A game might continue without 5 players as well, but that is totally the referee's prerogative. A maximum of 4 officials are allowed per team, be it the Team Handball rules or European Handball rules. Another interesting rule laid down is that at any point of time whilst the game is in progress, a court player can be designated as the goal keeper and vice versa. But those involved in substitution have to leave and enter the court over the substitution line of their respective team.
The Ball: The ball is made of leather or a synthetic material and the surface must not be either shiny or slippery. The circumference and weight according to the categories of teams playing are:
- For men above 16 years, it is 58 to 60 cm and the weight is 425-475 grams. This is the IHF size 3.
- For women above 14, and male youth in the age of 12 to 16, the circumference of the ball is 54-56 cm and the weight is between 325 and 375 grams.
- For boys and girls in the age group between 8 and 14 (girls 8-14 and boys 8-12), the circumference of the ball is 50 to 52 cm and the weight is between 290 to 330 grams.
There are atleast 2 balls available and the reserve must be readily available, as laid down in the team handball rules by the IHF.
Ball Playing: There are three basic ball playing rules involving the number 3.
- Three seconds you hold the ball and then pass.
- Only three steps when the ball is in your hand.
- When awarded a free throw, a player needs to be at a distance of 3 meters from another player.
A goal is said to be scored when the ball crosses the back goal line completely within the goal. In the goal area, the goalkeeper reigns supreme. Even if there is a violation of rules by the defender and still the ball goes in the goal. If a player scores in his team's goal, the other side gets the point. A goal declared by the referee cannot be taken back or disallowed in the course of the game and the entry of the goal is mandatory as said in the handball rules and regulations by the IHF.
Pulling or hitting the ball out of the opponent's hand, blocking and forcing the opponent using legs, hands or arms and threatening or endangering a player with or sans the ball are the top three fouls and these things are not permitted. If a player is fouled, while he or she is taking a certain shot at the goal, the player gets a 7 meter free shot.
Penalty or Punishment:
For a foul play, normally the referee gives a yellow card or if the foul or contact is too serious, the referee can give the player an instant 2-minute suspension. If a player gets more than 2 such suspensions, he or she gets a red card, as per the team handball rules. A red card results in disqualification and the player has to go off the court. A referee or another player's assault can lead to expulsion of the player. This means that the player cannot play for the rest of the game. Any objection or gestures or argument with the referee can lead to 2-min suspension.
Monday, January 24, 2011
History of sailing
Although sailing as a means of transportation predates history, sport sailing—or yachting—seems to have originated in the 17th cent. in Holland. From there it was introduced into England (c.1660) by Charles II, and eventually spread to the American colonies. Then, as now, it was common for sport sailors to join together for social and recreational purposes in groups known as yacht clubs. The world's first such club was founded (1720) at Cork, Ireland. The oldest continuously existing club in the United States is the New York Yacht Club (NYYC; founded 1844). In 1851 members of the NYYC raced the schooner America against British competitors around England's Isle of Wight. Victorious, they deeded their trophy to the NYYC. It became known as the America's Cup, giving its name to the oldest and most prestigious event in international sailboat racing. The United States won every America's Cup (the event is irregularly held) between 1851 and 1983, when it was won by Australia. In the 1980s and 90s radical changes in boat design and charges of espionage and even sabotage roiled Cup competition. The United States regained the Cup in 1987, then lost it to New Zealand in 1995. New Zealand successfully defended in 2000 but lost to Switzerland in 2003. Since 1992, a new class of longer, lighter boats carrying more sail on a higher mast have been used in America's Cup races.
Ocean racing, an arduous and dangerous sport, especially in long-distance solo events, has gained increased notice. Major ocean racing events include the Newport-Bermuda Race, the Transpacific Race, and the Volvo Ocean Race (formerly the Whitbread Round the World Race). Francis Chichester circumnavigated the globe alone in 1967, making only one stop; a year later nonstop around-the-world solo sailing was initiated in a race called the Golden Globe. Today's ocean racers sail advanced multihulled yachts and are aided by such modern technology as sophisticated communication devices and satellite-generated weather reports. Sailboat racing has also been part of the Olympic Games since 1900; at present Olympic sailors compete in nine classes ranging from sailboards 12 ft 1 in. (3.7 m) in length to 26-ft 9-in (8.2-m) sloops. Sailing, traditionally a sport of the wealthy, has been opened to wider participation by modern methods of boatbuilding.
There is no single “yacht type” of boat, rather many types that include sloops, yawls, catamarans, and ketches. The hundreds of different racing classes fall into three broad groups: one-design classes where very similar boats compete; handicap classes where dissimilar boats race, some with an advantageous time allowance; and rating classes where a variety of formulas take into account boat length, sail size, type of rig, and other factors. Sailboats originally had wooden hulls with sails made of sailcloth, a canvas commonly called duck. Today, however, fiberglass hulls and synthetic fabrics predominate, and rigid wing sails, which resemble aircraft wings, are used in place of a fabric sail when a high speed is desired (as in windsurfing or boats used to set speed-sailing records).
Especially popular are the 16–23 ft (4.88–7.01 m) one-design boats; these are mass-produced craft made from a single blueprint and intended for the sailor of modest means. Races between one-design boats are thought to be a particularly good test of a crew's ability, to which, rather than to design, any variation in speed must, at least in theory, be attributable.