in 80 Days!
to Main Page
to Xiamen & Fujian
Copyright 2001-7 by Sue Brown & Dr.
Recreation Links Google
Sports and Fitness
(body, foot, blind...)
Bowling & Badmintin Xiamen
Golf Courses and Equipment
Aquatic and Outdoors Sports Xiamen
Martial Arts Young
Mao Zedong's 1917 article on exercise
Wealth, or Both?"
Good Sports! Chinese
ruffled feathers recently by claiming to have invented golf and soccer
(a claim even the FIFA has lent credence to). But as far as I can tell,
over the centuries most Chinese were not into physical ¡°sports,¡± per
se, with the exception perhaps of martial sports¡ªarchery, horsemanship,
kung fu. Unlike us violent barbarians, cultured Chinese engaged in cultural
pastimes¡ªcalligraphy, painting, poetry, tea. But then foreigners showed
up with tennis, hunting, riding, basketball, swimming...
Eric Liddell, the Olympic gold medalist who became a
missionary to China, wrote that Chinese scholars insisted on wearing their
Confucian robes even as they played soccer (and tripped all over each
other). But it wasn¡¯t long before the Celestials doffed their elegant
robes and gave barbarians a run for their money. And in modern sports,
as well as modern education, medicine, music, arts and literature, Amoy
led the nation.
The Brits introduced soccer to Amoy in 1898 and the locals
have gotten a kick out of it ever since. Amoy was also a popular venue
for tiger hunting, and even today Xi¨¤m¨¦n
sportsmen continue to set world records in shooting.
G¨³l¨¤ngy¨³ was home to the ¡°Father
of Modern Chinese Sports,¡± John
Ma £¨ÂíÔ¼º²). He was New
China's 1st professional coach (read more in ¡°Discover G¨³l¨¤ngy¨³¡±),
and Xi¨¤m¨¦n athletes have been setting world records for decades. (Three
Xi¨¤m¨¦n athletes alone shared a total of 19 world championships.
YMCA Leads Amoy Sports
Did you know that YMCA members invented basketball,
volleyball, and racquetball, coined the term ¡°bodybuilding,¡± and ¡°softball,¡±
and had the first professional American football players? And YMCA
led modern sports in Xiamen, as well as in the rest of China.
Xiamen YMCA, one of China¡¯s first, was started
in April, 1912. Our ¡°Y¡± (see Religion Chapter) set up Amoy¡¯s first
sports program, held Xiamen¡¯s first sports meet (in Yanwu Ting on Nov.
27, 1915), Xiamen¡¯s first swim meet (on a Gulangyu beach in 1913), and
Xiamen¡¯s first boat races (in the water, I suppose¡ªin 1934). Andrew
¡°By 1907, staff at the Tianjin
YMCA were rallying their Chinese charges with the cry: When will China
be able to send a winning athlete to the Olympic contests? When will China
be able to invite all the world to Peking for an International Olympic
contest? Nearly a century later, on the eve of China's first-ever Olympic
games, this innovative book shows for the first time how sporting culture
and ideology played a crucial role in the making of the modern nation-state
in Republican China.¡±
¡°Marrow of the Nation¡ªa History of Sport and Physical Culture in Republican
So what to do on
Amoy? Try your hand at windsurfing, kayaking or parasailing on G¨³l¨¤ngy¨³
Islet. Race a go-kart on tracks have hosted international competitions
(and Yuandang Lake has hosted international aquatic races). Jog, roller
blade, cycle or play beach volleyball along our Island Ring Road (site
of the annual Xi¨¤m¨¦n International Marathon). Go rock climbing. Play
tennis, badminton, or basketball. Play golf on some of the best courses
in Asia (one designed by Greg Norman). Or try outdoor war games and paintball.
And when you¡¯re worn out and want something a little more sedate, stroll
through our endless parks or along our beachfront boardwalk, which stretches
for miles, then finish off your day with a fine meal in one of our thousands
of restaurants¡ªand help soul and sole with a nice Chinese foot massage.
In other words¡
Last Updated: May 2007
to Main Page
Back to Top