Self Identity And Health

I love my body. I enjoy playing football too. Since I was a young child, I have been an active participant in sports. This is mainly because of the influence from older brothers, who would either engage in sports like tennis, basketball and cricket for leisure or as extra-curricular activities in school. Giddens and Sutton (2017, p.166) posit that my engagement in football at a young age helped me to take on the aspects of my social roles. By interacting with my older brothers, as well as other children in the playground, I was able to imitate their actions which developed the ‘me’ element of the self. Participating in sports requires one to be fit and energetic. Sociologists explain that sports and physical activities have a direct impact on people’s health. This is illustrated by the high number of cases of obesity and the increase in lifestyle diseases.


I was brought up in an environment which encourages physical activity, and as grown as I am today, I find it hard for a day to go by without thinking about or finding the urge to play some football. This is why I would play train for football nearly twice a week, and over the weekends, I would play together with our local teammates of Kempston Town, Bedford in tournament matches. It is without a doubt that over the years of playing football I have engaged in physical workout activities which have resulted in my good health. I concur with Lee (2015) that participation in sports and physical activity is an individual responsibility and choice to live a healthy life. People ought to perceive their bodies as projects because, by choosing their lifestyle, they affect the shape and health of their bodies. By viewing the body as a project, one can regularly provide care, service and pay more attention to themselves and this will make them healthier (Horne, 2006, p.129).

According to Markula (2015, p.273), the media progressively portrays the male body as being athletically powerful to the extent that pain and violence are celebrated and tolerated in men’s sports. My experience leads me to agree with Markula’s opinion, because when injured, my manager, teammates and even fans would expect that I remain strong enough to play throughout the match. As a result, I have tried to nurture myself into enduring pain during game time. For instance, I have had problems with my right knee which often gets dislocated after rough encounters with opponents in the pitch. In another case, I had a head collision with a teammate during training which left me with a busted eyebrow that bled profusely. Despite these injuries, just like several other athletes, I would convince myself that without pain, there is no gain. This is congruent to the research which illustrates that athletes tend to deny the existence of pain or, they develop an attitude which is irreverent toward their pain (Lee, 2015).

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  • Giddens, A. & Sutton, P. W., 2013. Sociology. Anthony Giddens.
  • Horne, J., 2006. Sport In Consumer Culture. Palgrave.
  • Lee, J., 2015. Are they just checking our obesity or what?’ The healthism discourse and rural young women. Body Pedagogies, Education and Health, 15(2).
  • Markula, P., 2015. The Embodied Experience. In: Physical Culture, Ethnography and the Body.

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