Ancient Greek Athletes : An Idealized Human

1226 Words Dec 1st, 2014 5 Pages
The Ancient Greek Athlete: An Idealized Human
In Ancient Greece the culture thrived on the Olympic Games. This was a sacred time period were all the Greek country sides would hold fighting and come together (Girginov & Parry, 2005). The few Olympic athletes that made it to the games were idealized (“Ancient Olympia History,” n.d.). The high values the society and people placed on the games and the athletes are what defined the epitome of humankind. Ancient Greek Olympic athletes were often viewed as the only “perfect” humans of society. Unlike nowadays, it took a lot more than just competing in the Olympics to become such an idealized member of society. In today’s society, just making it to the Olympic Games is an impressive feat. But, ancient Greek Olympic athletes were idealized for more than their impressive strength and skills. With the emphasis of the society’s values on religion, mental toughness, not cheating, never giving up, and more, Olympic athletes were often regarded as the “perfect” human in the ancient Greek culture.
Athletics was a large part of everyday life for the ancient Greeks. Public gymnasiums as well as private “members only” gymnasiums were in every city to help teach athletic skills, and athletics were viewed as an essential part of education (“FAQs,” 2008). In fact, pronounced men of Greece would gather at gymnasiums to discuss philosophy, current events, religion, and politics (“Origin and History,” 2014). Exclusive gyms even…

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