Home truths.Byline: By Anna Morrell
It's a telling sign of the times that the Mums and Dads' race, once a permanent fixture in the junior school sports day “Sports Day” redirects here. For the LazyTown episode, see List of LazyTown episodes.
Sports days are annual events staged by many schools in which children participate in competitive sporting activities, often with the aim of winning trophies or prizes. , is facing extinction.
Fewer and fewer schools now offer pupils the chance to be ritually humiliated hu·mil·i·ate
tr.v. hu·mil·i·at·ed, hu·mil·i·at·ing, hu·mil·i·ates
To lower the pride, dignity, or self-respect of. See Synonyms at degrade. in front of classmates as their embarrassingly competitive or woefully woe·ful also wo·ful
1. Affected by or full of woe; mournful.
2. Causing or involving woe.
3. Deplorably bad or wretched: incompetent parents lurch and wobble wobble /wob·ble/ (wob´'l) to move unsteadily or unsurely back and forth or from side to side. See under hypothesis.
1. around the playing field to prove we're all good sports and it's really the taking part that counts ( ha!
It was never an edifying experience for anyone concerned, serving only to reinforce damaging stereotypes ( the fast, keen kids had fast, keen dads while the slower, clumsier ones would watch their awkward parents bringing up the rear with the growing realisation that they were genetically doomed to dread sports day.
The reasons for the demise of this unworthy institution are many and varied ( ranging from the popularity of wedge sandals which make sprinting tricky, to the fact that fewer parents have the courage to beg time off work to watch the under-eights' obstacle race once they've used up all the corporate goodwill sneaking off for unexpected in-set days. My theory, however, is that parents are just no longer up to the physical challenge of racing.
To the casual observer, today's parents, despite being older than in previous generations, are fitter than ever. Much time is spent ducking out of baby-sitting duties on evenings and weekends to train for marathons, play five-a-side footie, pump iron in the gym, notch up lengths in the swimming pool and try and look busy on the cricket pitch This article may contain original research or unverified claims.
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A cricket pitch is the central strip of the cricket field between the wickets. .
Parents playing sport with their children is not the unheard of event it once was. Gone are the days when the only exercise mums had at the beach was rubbing sun-cream over everyone and shelling hard boiled eggs ( these days she's securing her all-over tan as goalie or wicket keeper.
A more realistic approximation about the true state of parents' fitness can, however, be gleaned from your average 40th birthday party. These are depressing affairs at the best of times, haunted as they are by those twin spectres of sobriety ( middle age and small children. And there's only one topic of conversation as everyone knocks back the tap water ( sporting injuries.
Pulled hamstrings from five-a-side are the latest must-have for those in age denial, although tennis elbow tennis elbow - overuse strain injury , shin splints and cricks in the neck are gaining respectability as a viable excuse to put your feet up and watch football every night for a month. Most parents, it seems, only have to look at, say, a tennis racquet, and they're booking appointments with the physiotherapist. Thus the only reason they play sport with their kids is because they are no longer up to the challenge of more serious opponents.
Deep down, of course, we all know the pains are not the glamorous sports injuries we make out but our first encounter with physical decline.
So there's no point the headteacher inviting parents to race on sports day ( she'd just be bombarded with a volley of sick notes.