English III 2021
Increasing interest in health and quality of life has been accompanied by the demand for exercise facilities and space. Daily exercises can be pursued in solitude and do not require much equipment. However, in recent years, various organized daily exercise-related clubs and professional sports clubs, such as baseball and marine clubs, are increasing. Public sports facilities play a significant role in such a physical environment where daily physical activities are promoted. In particular, multi-sports complexes are growing in popularity because they facilitate diverse sports activities in many parts of the community. In addition, smaller village sports facilities for simple walking and stretching are available for those who prefer to engage in activities closer to home. The neighborhood units of sports facilities are especially important for elderly people with limited mobility and disposable income. Elderly people especially enjoy widely available gateball courts for slow walking and conversation rather than strenuous exercise. Rural areas heavily populated by the elderly feature these amenities.
Since the launch of professional baseball in 1982, professional sports such as soccer, basketball, and volleyball have steadily followed, becoming a popular part of leisure life and attracting the interest of many people. Professional sports are part of leisure life and the basis for the sports industry. However, they also have a deep association with local civic pride identity through community connections. Especially, baseball has become the representative professional sport, attracting millions of spectators every year, with the team rankings and player statistics occupying media time and daily conversation. Clubs to support professional soccer, basketball, and volleyball teams have moved beyond mere spectator status. Regionally-based professional teams are beloved by the regional population. Business enterprises promote and brand themselves through professional sports teams. As a new feature, in addition to the conglomerate-oriented professional sports teams, a variety of citizen sports clubs, maintained by the participation and support of citizens, have been organized.