ISSN 0798 1015


Vol. 38 (Nº 46) Year 2017. Page 40

Sport as an important factor of strengthening tolerance (The case of Kazakhstan)

El deporte como factor importante de fortalecimiento de la tolerancia (El caso de Kazajstán)


Received: 22/09/2017 • Approved: 25/09/2017


1. Introduction

2. Methodology

3. Results of the study and their discussion

4. Conclusion



The article highlights the importance of the sport, Olympic movement, Olympic Games, international sporting events as the main factor in strengthening interethnic friendship, tolerance and friendship. Based on the statements and conclusions of famous personalities of the sphere of sports movement, the authors give analyzes and opinions. Especially, information is provided on the role of international sports relations in the formation of a worldwide understanding among the peoples of the world and significant international events in this area.
Key words: Tolerance, sport, peace, Olympic movement, international sporting events, international sporting relations.


El artículo destaca la importancia del deporte, el movimiento olímpico, los Juegos Olímpicos, los eventos deportivos internacionales como el factor principal en el fortalecimiento de la amistad interétnica, la tolerancia y la amistad. Basándose en las declaraciones y conclusiones de personalidades famosas de la esfera del movimiento deportivo, los autores dan análisis y opiniones. Sobre todo, se proporciona información sobre el papel de las relaciones deportivas internacionales en la formación de un entendimiento mundial entre los pueblos del mundo y los importantes acontecimientos internacionales en este ámbito.
Palabras clave: tolerancia, deporte, paz, movimiento olímpico, eventos deportivos internacionales, relaciones deportivas internacionales.

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1. Introduction

The word tolerance in many European languages, from Latin tolerantia-tolerance, Toleration, Toleration, is associated with tolerance, condescension towards someone or something, means willingness to give another person the opportunity To exercise freedom of thought and action. Tolerance means respect, acceptance and proper understanding of other cultures, ways of self-expression and manifestation of human individuality [1].

"Tolerance is what makes peace possible and leads from a culture of war to a culture of peace," says the Declaration of Principles on Tolerance adopted by the General Conference of UNESCO in 1995. Tolerance is peace, tolerance to ethnic, religious, political, confessional, interpersonal disagreements, recognition of the possibility of the equal existence of the "other". Tolerance is a human virtue: the art of living in a world of different people and ideas, the ability to have rights and freedoms, while not violating the rights and freedoms of others. At the same time, it is not a concession, indulgence or indulgence, but an active life position based on the recognition of another.

One of the foundations of the ethnic unity of modern times, along with music, fine arts, architecture, painting, cinematography, sport began to perform. Many famous artists believe that modern sport has taken on some of the tremendous responsibility for human education, the "construction" of personality, morality, kindness, honesty and comradeship. Sports also helps to erase racial prejudice. In history, there are many examples where the achievements of individual athletes contributed to the recognition of their ethnic groups by other nations. So it was in the US and Canada in relation to African Americans, Indians, Hispanics, Chinese. After all, it does not matter your nationality, if you are really an excellent athlete.

Recently, a lot has been said about tolerance. This concept is especially relevant for Kazakhstan, where representatives of a huge number of peoples and nationalities, professing all world religions, live. If one does not learn to respect people who profess other views on life, who have their own traditions and beliefs, then the country will be constantly shaken by all sorts of conflicts.

2. Methodology

The purpose of the study was to determine the role and significance of sport, international sporting events, international sports relations in strengthening tolerance among the peoples of the world. Research methods: analysis of scientific and methodological literature, generalization of historical material, work experience and opinions of specialists in the field.

3. Results of the study and their discussion.

Modern sport occupies an important place in the physical and spiritual culture of society. As social phenomena, he is also inherent in various social functions. And the most important of these functions are the strengthening of tolerance and peace, mutual understanding among nationalities, peoples and states. In achieving these goals, a special role is played by sports, sports games, international sporting events, international sporting relationships, etc.

In ancient Greece, the Olympic Games were considered a holiday of peace. On the eve of this great holiday all the strife and war ceased. Nobody had the right to enter the territory of Olympia with weapons. The offender was faced with a severe fine - two mines in silver. But more terrible than a ruinous fine, as the Greeks thought, was the curse that the gods sent to the offender of the Olympic truce. Strict punishment was also imposed on a person who insulted the traveler who was going to the Olympic holiday. However, the most terrible punishment was the excommunication from the Games for one or two Olympics.

Such an important role was played by the Games in the political life of the country - wars were stopped. The competitions were extremely tough, and most importantly - honestly. The winners were awarded with an olive branch or a laurel wreath. They were awaited immortal fame not only in their hometown, but throughout the Greek world [2].

Therefore, the French baron and the founder of the revival of the Olympic Games in the late 19th century Pierre de Coubertin in his famous O-da sports knowingly said: "ABOUT SPORTS! YOU ARE WORLD! You establish good, kind, friendly relations between peoples. You are consent. You bring people together that yearn for unity. You teach a multilingual, multicultural youth to respect each other. You are the source of a noble, peaceful, friendly competition. You collect youth - our future, our hope - under our peaceful banners. About sport! You are the world! ".

Thus, sport, which is a kind of universal language of human communication, can become a powerful means of strengthening peace, tolerance and mutual understanding. Due to its ability to unite people, regardless of frontiers, cultures and religions, it can promote tolerance and reconciliation.

In modern times, in some cases it was sports that helped to renew the dialogue and find other channels for communication. For example, North and South Korea joined their athletes in a joint team at the 2000 Summer Olympics. The table tennis match was the first step in the process of restoring diplomatic relations between China and the United States in 1971. And today, Israeli and Palestinian children meet regularly to play football or basketball together.

Fundamental values, inseparably linked with the very essence of sport, make it an important method of strengthening peace, both locally and internationally. The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has for many years used the potential of sports in its programs to accelerate the process of reintegration of refugees, ensuring tolerance and mutual understanding between communities. In 2005, UNHCR expanded its activities and actively introduced sports events into its main programs and policies [3].
For example, on July 11, 2004, the players of the FC Moscow team appeared on the pitch before the match in T-shirts with the inscription "Moscow Against Racism". Thus, the club expressed support for the FARE initiative to counteract racism in sport. Club secretary Y. Belus said that racism is a serious problem for the whole of Russia and for Moscow in particular. He stressed that all the colored players of the Moscow teams are acutely aware of discrimination. Two African and two Caucasian football players play in FC Moscow. The team realized the need to protect their comrades from the attacks of racists.

Another evidence that sports contributes to the development of ethnic tolerance is the ability of athletes of different nationalities to raise the status of their people, their country on the world stage. The merits of some outstanding athletes and sports teams become not only significant events in the life of their countries and regions, but also make them, to a certain extent, iconic figures in the fate of peoples and ethnic groups. Such sportsmen become symbols of the national pride of their peoples during their lifetime, idols of whole generations of spectators and fans.

The participation of representatives of various ethnic groups in sports teams strengthens inter-ethnic solidarity and tolerance in society. For example, in modern Kazakhstan in conditions of the formation of a civil society, the victories of the national teams of the country with the participation of representatives of different peoples are much more significant than any political slogans and declarations about patriotism and multinationality of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

In 1999, Berar continued this experience in Romania, in a village where there were serious outbreaks of inter-ethnic violence between groups of Hungarians, Romanians and Gypsies. Thanks to funding from the European Commission, the English organization "Youth Action for Peace" was able to create a social center in the middle of this village. The main goal of this organization was to establish peaceful contacts between representatives of different communities. Among other things, organized and football matches. Faced with the refusal of many children to create mixed groups (as in Croatia, only the Roma agreed), a match was first held between Roma and Romanians and international observers. Gradually the organizers of the action added the Roma children to the Romanian team and vice versa. After a few matches, they managed to create two really mixed teams.

During these experiments E. Berar noticed one common feature: the success of the event depends on the attention paid to the quality of the game. If players enjoy, the teams are balanced, the field in decent condition, it is quite possible to convince the players to accept and such an unpopular condition, as mixed teams. Another conclusion is that independent observers, volunteers, physical education teachers, etc., need to be present, and the more they are there, the easier it is to control the game [4].

In 1894, in Paris, in the Great Hall of the Sorbonne, Coubertin gave a lecture entitled "The Olympic Renaissance." That's when he said his famous phrase: "We need to make sports international, we need to revive the Olympic Games!" [5].

 At this Constituent Congress, two thousand delegates from twelve countries unanimously decided to revive the Olympic Games and establish the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the highest governing body of the Olympic movement. The first members of the IOC were also the organizers of the national Olympic committees in their countries. To stretch the thread connecting the two civilizations - Hellenic and ours, Athens was chosen as the venue for the I Olympic Games of our time. The year I Olympiad was called the 1896th.

Since this year, all the Olympic competitions have given a powerful impetus to the development of sport on the globe. In the world the sports industry began to be created. The Olympic movement became an important part of the life of the world community. Every year the number of participants in international competitions, representing different continents, cultures, civilizations, states, races, peoples, grows. Sportsmen from China, South Korea, Japan, Senegal, Kenya, Turkey, countries of the Arab East, etc., are making themselves more and more active in sports.

In recent history, the participation of states in the world Olympic Games and world championships has become a symbol of their international recognition. As the modern world practice shows, in order to take a worthy place in the emerging community of nations, states must meet world standards not only in the field of economy, science, technology, but also in the field of sports.

Thus, the emergence of the Olympic Games refers to the distant past, they are called upon to unite people regardless of their age, race or gender, because sport, culture, science, art must unite in the Olympic movement into a solid and beautiful alloy. Without a doubt, the Olympic Games - the largest and most significant event of modern sports life.

To summarize, it should be noted that at the level of communication, sports, and in particular the Olympic Games, can be used as an effective mechanism for the transmission and dissemination of ideas of peace, tolerance and respect for opponents, regardless of ethnic, cultural, religious or other differences . The comprehensive nature of sports makes it an excellent tool for spreading knowledge, fostering mutual understanding and understanding the need for peaceful coexistence.

In order to further strengthen and expand peace and mutual understanding of the peoples of the world, cooperation with the IOC with international humanitarian organizations, especially with UNESCO, is intensifying, in which sport has become an important place. In 1958, the International Council for Physical Culture and Sport (SITICS) was established in cooperation with the IOC and UNESCO. In 1978, the UNESCO formed the Intergovernmental Committee for Physical Education and Sports. Here it should be noted that in order to strengthen tolerance through sport, the "fair play" movement plays an important role at all levels of the sporting event. And the main goal of the fair play movement is the promotion of ideas and principles of fair play, especially in the field of children's and youth sports, as well as rewarding athletes and teams with prizes.

Sports issues began to be included in the agenda of political forums and discussed at the highest level. A good example of this is the inclusion of sports issues in the final document of the Security and Cooperation in Europe co-operation, which was held in Helsinki in 1975. Participants of the Meeting expressed readiness to develop sports contacts between states, to promote the organization of international competitions, to encourage any form of international sports exchanges. Since 1973, regular conferences of heads of sports organizations of the European countries began to be held once a year.

Since the middle of the XX century, regional sports competitions, conducted under the aegis of the IOC, have also started to develop actively, which also contributed a lot to strengthening tolerance among the peoples of the world. So. Since the 50's. Panama, African, Scandinavian, Mediterranean, Arctic games, games of the British Commonwealth of Nations and other continental competitions were regularly held. [6]

Thus, the period 50-60-ies. XX century became an important stage in the development of the international sports movement, which not only acquired new actors, but also expanded its geography, received forms and became an integral part of modern international relations, reflecting all its contradictions and difficulties.
One of the directions of great social and political importance in the strengthening of tolerance is the International Sport Relations (MSS), which are developed on the basis of mutual cultural cooperation of peoples. MSS develops in two main directions:

- The international sports movement (MSD);

- Interstate sports attitude (IES).

Theoretical aspects of international sports relations as part of international relations are currently among the issues that are not sufficiently developed in science. Nevertheless, based on the existing experience and existing examples, it is possible to identify the main forms and participants of international sports relations.

The most important goals of international sports relations as part of international relations:

- Strengthening of interstate, interethnic, intercultural relations;

- Expansion of international cultural contacts, acquaintance with other cultures;

- Decrease in interstate, interethnic tension, smoothing of conflicts;

- Forming a positive image of states and peoples.

International sports relations are a complex, dynamic phenomenon, developing in various forms. The main forms of international sports are:

- International sports competitions (olympic games, world championships, continental championships, for example, European championships, friendly matches, etc.).

- Joint training, training.

- Exchange of delegations of athletes, coaches, specialists in the field of sports.

- Exchange of experience, information, literature and other materials in the field of sports.

- Conclusion of agreements on physical culture and sports.

Perhaps the most important form of international relations in the field of sports are competitions, which can be classified as follows:

  1. The Olympic Games.
  2. Official world and continental championships.
  3. Cup competitions.
  4. Regional games.
  5. National championships (they can be held with the participation of foreign athletes).
  6. Friendly international sports meetings [7].

Another dynamically developing form of international relations in the field of sport is congresses, assemblies, conferences, symposiums, on which urgent problems of the international sport movement are being addressed. These activities, as a rule, solve the following tasks:

- determine the most general prospects for the development of international sports cooperation;

- establish contacts with other international sports organizations;

- popularize sports, physical education, a healthy lifestyle;

- form the main tasks and content of sports cooperation.

The main factors of international sports relations are:

  1. Official organizations and institutions dealing with issues of physical education and sports.
  2. Collectives of physical culture and sports.
  3. Public organizations for sports (trade union, youth, departmental and others).
  4. Institutes of physical culture, other sports training and research organizations.
  5. Individual athletes, coaches.
  6. The movement of fans.
  7. Business structures.

Mass media - radio, print, cinema, television. As already mentioned above, international organizations are an important factor in international relations in the field of sports, the number of which is increasing year by year, and spheres of competence and influence are steadily expanding.

International sports organizations are non-governmental organizations. Public associations of organizations and individuals. Created on the basis of voluntariness and interest in a certain sphere of physical education. International sports organizations are both amateur and professional. International sports organizations can exist in the form of federations, associations, unions.

The peculiarity of the modern period of development of international sports relations is that in the context of globalization, many sports organizations are not only factors of sports diplomacy, but of world politics in general. In addition to their specific sporting functions, a number of large international sports organizations participate in social movements, contribute to the solution of humanitarian and environmental problems, support the fight against poverty, racism, and participate in actions in support of the poorest countries. Examples of such organizations are the IOC, FIFA, UEFA and many others. Another feature of the activities of international sports organizations, which emerged in the late XX - early XXI centuries. Is that many of them have become large business structures.

The most striking example in this is the IOC. The functions of the International Olympic Committee and its differences from the organizing committee of the Olympic Games or national Olympic committees, as well as the problems of global management of world sports, were specifically set forth in the book of authors Jean-Loup Chapple and Brenda Kubler-Mabbott “The International Olympic Committee and the Olympic system. Management of world sports” [8].

According to the forecasts of sociologists, sport in its further development will unite in the national or continental level. Even today, many athletes from different countries play in other national teams, participate in open competitions and train in different national centers, and trainers work in different national teams. Thus, the achievement in the field of science and sports methodology has become the property of all athletes of the world. And their elements are penetration into the world social and political system of the Committee on Sport of the European Council, international sports federations by sport, international committees for assessing the physical condition of the population, etc. As a result, questions on the development of sports and international games are considered in the UN and parliaments of states , Relevant international declarations are adopted.

The state of Kazakhstan is a presidential republic. Its supreme legislative body is the Parliament, and the executive power is the Government. In these structures laws and legislative and legal bases of the sphere of physical culture and sports are developed and approved. Public administration in the development of FC & S is carried out by the Committee of Physical Culture and Sports. To date, sports in Kazakhstan occupy a specific position in the structures of education, health, culture and tourism, defense, internal affairs, the KNB and border troops.
Therefore, for our multinational country in order to strengthen tolerance and peace, it is especially important to develop sport, organize international sports games and expand international sports relations.

In the years of its sovereignty, the Republic of Kazakhstan managed to hold several world and international competitions. For example, in 1997 the Central Asian Games were held for the first time, and the Winter Asian Games in 2011 and the World Winter Universiade in 2017 were organized at the highest level, according to international standards and requirements, and at the selection for the Winter Olympics in 2022 Kazakhstan, together with China Reached the final, only three votes separated Almaty from the victory for hosting the Olympics-2022.

Kazakhstan's hosting of the Asian Games and the Universiade is an important political decision. These events not only increased the international status of Kazakhstan, but also provided an opportunity to develop winter sports infrastructure at a high level, and, most importantly, to propagandize on a large scale the Kazakhstan model of tolerance, peace and friendship.

Today, it is important for Kazakhstan to develop sports in order to further strengthen and preserve tolerance between the ethnic groups peacefully living in the country. For this purpose, the Sports Committee of Kazakhstan, various activities are implemented in the form of national sports games and festivals in conjunction with the Assembly of Peoples of Kazakhstan, whose chairman is the President of the country N.Nazarbayev.

4. Conclusion

Thanks to its ability to unite people, regardless of borders, cultures and religions, sport promotes tolerance and reconciliation.

It should be said about ethnic tolerance. In some cases, it is sport that helps to renew dialogue and find other channels for communication. Fundamental values, inseparably linked with the very essence of sport, make it an important method of strengthening peace, both locally and internationally. The sport is used to accelerate the process of reintegration of refugees, ensuring tolerance and mutual understanding between communities.

Sport is not an activity, taken by itself, it does not produce a special product. Sport first of all - a means of self-knowledge, self-determination rights. Sport actively participates in the socialization of the individual, the formation of its status, the position in the community and in society as a whole, in the preparation of people for joint activities. Therefore, the main trend in the development of sports is its internationalization [9].

Another evidence that sports contributes to the development of ethnic tolerance is the ability of athletes of different nationalities to raise the status of their people, their country on the world stage. There are many examples of stories when the achievements of individual athletes contributed to the recognition of their ethnic groups by the surrounding peoples.

And, at last, participation of representatives of various ethnic groups in sports teams strengthens interethnic solidarity and tolerance in the society.

It is impossible not to mention the Olympic Games, which are a holiday of peace, friendship and mutual understanding of the youth of different countries and continents. The Olympic Games, as nothing else united and continue to unite athletes from around the globe, regardless of race, culture, religion. After all, in sport it does not matter if you are a winner.

And also, during the period of great political, socio-economic and innovation-technological impulses, integration processes throughout the world are actively developing year by year throughout the world. It should be noted that, in this case, international sport links and international sports games are important factors in strengthening tolerance and supporting peace among nations. Therefore, the current Olympic movement is the most powerful social phenomenon in the world.

In a word, summing up, we can say that sport, the Olympic movement, international sports relations, international sports games and events are certainly prerequisites, even the foundations for the development of peace and the strengthening of tolerance in the society as a whole.


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1. Kazakhstan Engineering Pedagogical University of People’s Friendship

2. Kazakh Academy of Sport and Tourism

Revista ESPACIOS. ISSN 0798 1015
Vol. 38 (Nº 46) Year 2017
Indexed in Scopus, Google Schollar


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