What do we mean when we say ‘sport’?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article examines the evolving historiography of ‘sport’ vis-à-vis the BritishSociety of Sports History (BSSH), as per fluid and shifting definitions of whatthe term ‘sport’ means. It begins by discussing broad themes within theprevious historiography of UK sport. Afterwards, it roughly quantifies thecontent of articles the BSSH’s journal The Sports Historian/Sport in Historyduring the period 1993–2021, with an emphasis on sporting forms andemerging trends. Finally, the author provides a similar discussion of thetopics of conference papers at annual meetings of the BSSH during theperiod 2011–21. Throughout this article, the author, Chair of the Society from2017 to 2019, attempts to provide some causal explanations for why certainsporting forms are popular points of discussion, how others are pushing theenvelope of the term ‘sport’, and issues therein.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)467-490
Number of pages24
JournalSport in History
Issue number4
Early online date29 Aug 2022
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • British Society of Sports History
  • sport in History
  • history of sport
  • physical culture
  • leisure studies


Dive into the research topics of 'What do we mean when we say ‘sport’?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this