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Every time you open a newspaper or switch on the TV you are likely to be confronted by stories of controlled and uncontrolled aggression on the sports field, in our homes, in our neighborhoods and cities and countries across the world. Aggression seems to permeate our history and cultures. Human societies spend a lot of time trying to curb and control their citizens’ feelings of aggression to ensure social and governmental relationships function optimally in a peaceful and safe environment. At other times the flames of human aggression are fanned by the same societies in order to challenge opposing societies and ideologies. Yet in war, as in sport and other social arenas, rules have been established to govern and control the worst of aggressive human behavior and hostilities. For thousands of years sporting competitions have been organized as a legitimate avenue for nations to compete aggressively but peacefully in a controlled environment for physical dominance The ability to control aggression largely defines individual’s and societies’ success, on and off the field. Aggression is a highly controversial attitude that is commonly associated with physical violence. The act of aggression is used to assert power and control over others. Whilst viewed as a negative personal characteristic in most societies, aggression is a primal instinct and a trait that often transpires to success in a sporting environment. In sport it is essential that an athlete can hone and control their inner aggression in order to dominate the opposition. Controlled aggression is the mark of a successful player and a team’s ability to win. Imagine a defensive back locking on to his target, scything through the field with lightning speed. The meters are sl... ... middle of paper ... ...sults such as debilitating injuries, death, incarceration and criminal records. However aggression is not always met with aggression. In the case of bullies they often show aggression towards weaker targets that are not inclined to show aggression back. Many people are not inclined to respond to or with aggression choosing to avoid confrontation rather than put themselves at risk of injury or serious trouble. Human beings’ primal instincts of aggression need to be, and can be, channeled for the purposes of good not evil. The discipline and teamwork of sport can be a great avenue for channeling and controlling adolescent and adult aggression into legitimate and more productive pathways, whilst also building fitness, teamwork and self-esteem. Uncontrolled aggression on the other hand on or off the sport’s field is never a good thing and not a quality to be admired.

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