5 Great TED Talks About Sports

Sports TED Talks

  • Never, Ever Give Up: Diana Nyad
  • The Difference Between Winning and Succeeding: John Wooden
  • How Augmented Reality Will Change Sports and Build Empathy: Chris Kluwe
  • The Rise of Cricket, The Rise of India: Harsha Bhogle
  • Extreme Wingsuit Flying: Ueli Gegenschatz

Whether you're a fan, enthusiast, play sports or like learning about physiology and the science of sports, TED talks "cover all the bases." TED offers four playlists covering different sports topics and over 200 individual talks and blog posts. Here are five of the best TED Talks for sports practitioners and fans.

Never, Ever Give Up: Diana Nyad

At age 60, long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad, who has conquered some of the world's toughest swims, decided to swim from Cuba to Florida. The world's best swimmers have attempted this swim and all have failed. The more than 100 mile swim goes through some of the world's most dangerous waters, filled with deadly jellyfish and other predators. Nyad tells the story of how she trained to achieve this seemingly impossible goal and achieved it. Her message is "never give up" and "find a way" and you will achieve your goals.

The Difference Between Winning and Succeeding: John Wooden

Legendary basketball coach John Wooden tells the story of his secrets of success, coaching and leadership. His life lessons include defining success by the individual and their own efforts, not comparisons to others. The wide-ranging talk covers poetry, his father's simple lessons, things learned in the classroom and on the basketball court. His three rules for success include timeliness, no profanity, and above all patience. Wooden says, "whatever you are doing, you must be patient."

How Augmented Reality Will Change Sports and Build Empathy: Chris Kluwe

Former NFL kicker Chris Kluwe discusses what augmented reality is, and how it could help people experience sports in a much more realistic, in-depth way than ever before. Kluwe uses the example of Google Glass, taking viewers through an ultra-realistic sports experience. Kluwe says that augmented reality will change how fans view sports and might even help them see others with more empathy by allowing them to experience what others see, hear and feel.

The Rise of Cricket, The Rise of India: Harsha Bhogle

With over 1 billion citizens, India is set to become the world's most populous nation by 2022, and some population experts believe it already has more citizens than China. Cricket is India's most popular sport, with multi-million dollar players, celebrity owners and a much more fast-paced sport than non-enthusiasts would assume. Harsha Bogle is one of India's most-popular cricket commentators. His talk covers the rise of Cricket as a very popular sport paralleling the rise of modern India.

Extreme Wingsuit Flying: Ueli Gegenschatz

Imagine sky-diving in nothing but a suit with wings. It's the closest thing to flying the same way as birds fly. Wingsuit jumper Ueli Gegenschatz talks about how the wingsuits work, why he does it, and shows video of the exhilarating flights that are possible with wingsuits. Gegenschatz has done nearly every type of human flight, from skydiving to paragliding and BASE jumping from the Eiffel Tower.

TED has a limited but high-quality selection of about 250 talks related to sports. Some of the talks focus on sports medicine, or the individual stories of athletes ranging from tennis pioneer Billie Jean King to tennis star Serena Williams. Other talks cover sports technology, physiology, sports science, and speculation about the future of sports or human performance capabilities.

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