Athlepedia, The Athletics Wiki

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"Sportsmen" redirects here. For other uses of the term, see Hunters.

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File:Jim Thorpe, 1912 Summer Olympics.jpg

Jim Thorpe at the 1912 Summer Olympics

An athlete (also sportsman or sportswoman) is a person who competes in one or more sports that involve physical strength, speed, or endurance.

Athletes may be professionals or amateurs.[1] Most professional athletes have particularly well-developed physiques obtained by extensive physical training and strict exercise accompanied by a strict dietary regimen.


File:Three runners BM GR 1856.10-1.1.jpg

Runners, ceramics, S. IV a.C.

File:Armedforces crosscountry coppingerandballas.jpg

Athletes taking part in a race on a snowy park in the U.S.

The word "athlete" is a romanization of the Template:Lang-el, athlētēs, one who participates in a contest; from ἄθλος, áthlos or ἄθλον, áthlon, a contest or feat. The primary definition of "sportsman" according to Webster's Third Unabridged Dictionary (1960) is, "a person who is active in sports: as (a): one who engages in the sports of the field and especially in hunting or fishing."

See also[]

  • Athletics
  • Sportswear (activewear)
  • Outdoor enthusiast
  • Jock (athlete)
  • Athlete of the Year
  • Women's sports
  • Olympic Games athletes are also known as 'Olympians'


  1. Collins English Dictionary, Millennium Ed. - 'athlete'

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