Sports are considered an important part in the American culture; the main four popular games in America are the American football, Basketball, Baseball and Ice Hockey. American football has a great number of participants, athletes and fans that are interested in the game and have great passion to support their teams to win titles. As a matter of fact football exists not only in America but also throughout the world but it is played with different rules and equipment. Thus, there are many games that are using the name football however, there are some countries are using the word “soccer” instead. In order to play American football, many things must to be available like, two teams, a field and a ball that takes an egg shape. Team members of each team try their best to defend the end of their zone, the goal line, from the other team members as each team prevent the other from passing with the ball to the goal line. The duration of the game is an hour, 60 minutes, divided into four quarters, each quarter is 15 minutes in addition to 20 minutes as a break throughout the match time.
History of the American Football:
The history of the game began particularly in England in the 19th century. While a football player was playing football before discovering the American football, he felt disappointed as he couldn`t use his hands in the game, as in football rules players use only their legs and can`t use their hands. Then the flame of American football started as it was called Rugby and was so popular game in England. Thence the game spreads throughout the world and meets huge global success. In the middle of the 19th century the game found its way inside America as most Americans liked it. After that the game split up from Rugby and became separated game. It was just a matter of time to make the American Professional Football Association “APFA” to be the association that concerned with American football but its name changed to be National Football League “NFL” and this association changed most of the rules of the game and developed it to be excellent.
The general skills of the players that are necessary required to play the game and achieve success are strong big body, speed, endurance, resistance, patients, cleverness and good organization. These qualities and skills of the players are very important as most players have to run more than 100 yards after getting the ball bearing in mind the critical smashes that the players receive from each other. Hence every time require good managers and coaches to set them plans and good techniques to maintain the team to win matches. None can doubt also the major rule of the team leader as he controls the team members and he should be the best and most experienced player to support his team members.
Equipment and Tools of the American Football:
There are many equipment, apparatuses and tools must be used in the game and without them the game can`t be done. To start, the personal tools of the player, a football player must wear helmet, face mask, chin-guard, shoulders pad, elbows pad, ribs pad, waist pad, arms protector, thighs pad, knee pads, cotton shirt, short tight pants and athletic shoes.
The American football players use the ball to score goals; this ball is made of two layers of plastic or natural rubber as there is under strata made also of rubber in order to let the air comes in it as well as it takes the egg shape in order to make it easy in catching and holding it by the player. The length of the ball is about 25 cm and the weight of it is nearly 40 gram.
The dimensions of the pitch are 360 feet in length and 160 feet in widthwise, about 109.5 M in length and 48.5 M widthwise. The long lines on both sides are called sidelines and the short lines that are in the end of the pitch are called end zone lines. There are also repeated lines every 10 yards on the pitch ground. The whole pitch length is 100 yards.
Rules of the American Football:
The American Football received huge success in America as great numbers of college students are playing this game in addition to the great widespread of the game through televisions and media. The association that is responsible of this game gets billions dollars from the fans and the popularity of the game. American football consists of two teams each team consists of 11 players divided into 4 in the attack, 2 in both sides, the quarter back, 2 in the middle, back left and back right players; the main purpose of the two teams is to get the ball and possess it in order to score goals and gain points through moving the ball by throwing it or running while holding it to make it pass the goal line of the challenger team.
In the beginning of the match, a currency metal toss is held by the referee like soccer in order to determine which team will start the kick off and becomes the forward team and the other team is the defended team. When a team scores a goal through a touch down the other team puts the on the pitch of about 35 yards and kicks it to start the attack on the other team. The attacker team tries its best to reach the goal line of the opponents to get points.
How to play the game? Here is the major question of American football. All players should put their hands on the ground and only one player doesn`t do that as he stays in the middle of the team. This player puts his hand on the ball, stands behind him the quarter player as he sends some marks and hints for his team members to start their plan. After that the middle player sends the ball to the quarter player to start the match. Thence this player backs a little with the ball to see another player opens the field and sends him the ball with long throwing. After that the player holds the ball and run with it to the end of the goal line of the opponents or at least fall with the ball on the ground to start a new attack from the spot he fall into of the pitch. Defenders of the other team have to run with this receiver of the ball and prevent him to catch or get the ball. Thus interception happened if the defenders managed to get the ball and change their team from the defending state to the attack state.
Briefly the American football depends mainly on strength and beat down the opponent, thence officials must set specified rules and regulations in order to avoid any injuries and save the safety of the players. There are 7 referees that are controlling the match and each referee has a specified rule. The main referee of the match is running the match and has the final decision; he announces a foul, fine and also explains it for the captain and manager. There is also the umpire referee, head linesman, line judge, back judge, field judge and side judge. The fouls and fines of the match are many for instance, delaying the game and this happens when a player exceeds the line of the opponent before throwing the ball, offside and this happens when a defender exceeds the line and touches the opponent before throwing the ball, catching the opponent from behind and it is considered dangerous play as it may cause an injury and its fine is the guilty team backs 10 yards in its zone, when a defender beats a player who doesn`t hold the ball, when a player takes the helmet off the rival, when a player committees a non-athletic attitude and uses inappropriate violence. The maximum penalty for any team is to return to the middle of the its zone in the pitch.
Objectives of the American Football:
The objective of American football is getting the higher number points through scoring goals. Touch down means that the falling in the goal of the opponent, in other words reaching the end zone of the opponent`s line and put the ball inside the goal. If a team manages to do that it gets 6 points. And then this team receives a chance to score another point through kicking the ball from 20 yards to make it pass the two bars of the opponent; by doing that the team gets 7 points. The attack team has another chance instead of kicking through passing the ball to the quarter player and this player spears the defend of the opponents to reach the goal line and his gets 2 points. If a player kicks the ball from a distance and it passes through the two bars of the opponent, his team will get 3 points.
The American football paves the way for players to be famous and gain success as well as the huge profits of the media. The major American teams that managed to get best titles and prices are Dallas Cowboys plays in Texas stadium, New York Giants and its stadium is the Giants stadium, New York Jets plays in the Giants Stadium also, and Washington Redskins. These teams has made great fame for their players and managers. The fans like to support their teams by paying a lot of money to attend the matches and buy their favorite players` shirts. All of these stuff helps teams to collect a remarkable amount of money. There are also many objectives of the game such as it build a connection among athletes, abreaction, bearing fear, social reaction and developing the confidence of the athlete.
Psychological, Social & Physiological Effects of the American Football:
1- The Psychological Effects of American Football:
Sports has a huge and efficient impacts on kids and elderly people. Most experts proclaimed that games help parents to understand the behaviors of their kids and solve their problems. Practicing sports is considered the main important factor to raise the psychological health not only for adults but also for elder people; as it helps athletes to get rid of any boredom and confusion. American football aids elderly people to get rid of some life pressures and tensions as well as avoid any physical or psychological diseases as most of them are facing many problems in work or in school. American football also helps athletes to be in a very good shape, flexible and fitness; this makes kids and especially teenagers to feel so proud of their bodies and avoid and any fatness or shyness of their body shapes. America football plays an important psychological role in reducing the nervous, depression, insomnia and feeling of loss confidence. It also develops the sense of human happiness through improving the cells inside the brain as well as increasing positive skills, challenges and high volition.
The American football paves the way for kids to know new friends, enhance their social relationships, passing their free times with benefits in addition to the compliance their undergo through dedicating their times in training and practicing the game. For Elder people American football gives them the strength feeling and ability to perform harsh activities through physical activities as they feel that they still young and feel very proud of their body shapes. Fans also get the opportunity to support their favorite teams through attending the matches in the stadium or at least watch the match on televisions and this helps them to feel relieve after their teams win matches and seize titles. On the other hand, American football has negative effects on kids as it may cause them severe injuries and make them feel helpless or that they would not recover and become able to back to play the game again. These injuries may contribute in ruining their hearts and feelings or even destroy their life. For elder people, they may feel disappointed and very depressed after the loss of their favorite teams and they may suffer heart attacks or even bad psychological impacts on their health. Thus there are some extremist fans who could make bad behaviors as a result of the loss of their favorite teams.
2- The Social Effects of American Football:
In America, American football is considered the second popular game after basketball. Though, many associations are concerning with it and supporting its industry as they get eminent success from exploiting this sport. Through devoting all forces to improve the game and spread it throughout the whole world, the society can resolve many problems for instance problems of unemployment, financial crisis and reducing the number of crimes. American football helps the society to get rid of many bad circumstances for example the thrill, robs and rapping as most youth are so occupied with playing the game and well using their powers in good things to avoid any bad stuff. Through applying the rules of the sport, athletes get good values, learning to respect others, getting new talents in addition to increasing the consciousness of preventing some illness of the laziness feelings; and these criteria helps the society a lot in reaching stability and success. As matter of fact the societies that are concerned mainly to develop the sports field, succeed to reach progress and social growth. Moreover, American football helps the society to achieve essential connection between elderly people during supporting their favorite teams and it contributes in breaking the bonds among fans as they share their feelings and behaviors while there are in the stadiums.
3- The Physiological Effects of the American Football:
The physiological effects of American football are considered significant. It prevents heart diseases and strokes for the athletes; as compliance in practicing sports strengthen the hear bone and enhancing its work through increasing the efficiency of blood flow. American football helps elderly people to avoid high pressure and diabetes. For kids playing American football aids them to strengthen the backbones and rise the fitness, fortitude, elasticity and stamina. It is clear that playing American football require big body for the athlete; in order to achieve that the player has to spend great number of hours in training and this utilities forcing the muscles and body articulations as well as increasing the ability of peacefully sleep not only for kids but also for elderly people.
On the other side, American football may have negative effects on both athletes and fans. Athletes may confront critical injuries, concussion, broken bones and this is because the dangerous movements of tough players. The players suffer physiologically negative impacts from their critical wounds as most of the injuries are dangerous and severe. Throughout the match players get rough hits in several parts of their body and especially in their heads. The repetitive clashes on the players` heads make them agonize from brain cells diseases. Thus, there are some rules athletes should follow in order to avoid such injuries for instance, they have to practice and train very hard to increase their strength, avoid any fervor, fire or zealotry. Furthermore, athletes should follow the doctors, managers and referees regulations.
Comparing the American Football, Basketball, Soccer, Handball & Tennis:
American football is different from many other games as in basketball and handball a player can`t kick the ball with his leg but only catches the ball with his hand, in American football the player has the right to kick or hold the ball. In soccer the player can only kick the ball and can`t hold it. While in tennis a player hits the ball with his racket. In American football, two teams of 11 players for each team are participating in the game, in basketball, there are two teams but of 5 players for each team, in soccer there are two teams of 11 players, in handball there are two teams of 7 players but in tennis as an individual sport only two players versus each other and try to win the match through making the ball comes in the right place of the opponent`s zone. All the four games are depending on the ball, notwithstanding in American football players have to make the ball exceeds the goal line of their opponent. In basketball players have to make the ball comes across the basket of their opponent, while in both handball and soccer players are looking for scoring goals through making the ball comes inside the goal box between the two crossbars.
There are different rules of the four sports as in American football the match lasts for an hour and 20 minutes as a break unlike in basketball the match lasts for 40 minutes and 10 minutes as a break, in soccer the match lasts for 90 minutes and 15 minutes as a break, in tennis the match may last for more than 3 hours it depends mainly on whose player wins three groups of the match, and in handball the match lasts for an hour divided into two halves. Basketball, handball, soccer and tennis are different than American football in tools and equipment as American football players use many protective tools unlike basketball, handball, soccer and tennis players don`t use any protective tools as it is considered more safe game. In tennis there are no clashes or hits between the players as every player stands on one side far from the other player, unlike the other four sports there is many smashes and collisions among the players.
In a nutshell, the American football is considered the second popular sport in America after basketball. It is played by a great numbers of athletes not only in America but also inside the world. The number of the teams in American football league is 32 teams and divided into two parts every part 16 teams. In order to score goals during playing the sport, players have to make the ball pass the goal lines of the rivals` area. Players throw the ball for their team members to pave the way for them to penetrate through the defense of their opponent and score goals. The major skills of the players to perform the game are strength, fitness and speed. The rules of the sport are clear through overthrowing and safety kick. The duration of the sport is an hour. The major objectives of the game are how to find the appropriate measures to achieve success in the sport. There are psycho-socio-physiological effects of the game as it has two different impacts positive through success and negative if injuries occur.