CM . . .
. Volume XII Number 17 . . . . April 28, 2006
Part of the 16-volume “For the Love of Sports” series, designed for elementary school students, these titles explain their featured sport in an interesting way without getting too technical. Averaging 10 chapters each, the books are identical in format and layout and include a table of contents, an index and a glossary. The text is easy to comprehend and enhanced with plenty of colour photographs and diagrams. Each book begins with a brief history of the sport followed by information about the equipment, rules of play, famous superstars, and tips for staying healthy by means of proper nutrition, hydration and specific exercises and stretches to strengthen one’s body for the sport. There is also a fun quiz at the back of each book. Though the books have a definite American slant, they do acknowledge the contributions of other nations.
Lacrosse, Canada’s official summer game, is North America’s oldest team sport and is quickly gaining popularity. For the Love of Lacrosse explains the modern version of the game (both box and field lacrosse), positions, checking, penalties and the slight difference between men’s and women’s games. A diagram of a regulation field is included. Of the three titles reviewed, this one contains the most reference to Canada.
Golf, invented in Scotland in the 1300s or 1400s has changed little since the rules were created at St. Andrews golf club in 1552. In For the Love of Golf, there is special mention of the differences between woods, the various numbered irons and putters, and between the three types of shots: drives, approaches and putts. Readers will learn about the parts of a gold course (tee, fairway, green, rough and hazards), game basics, keeping score and golf etiquette, as well as famous golf organizations, tournaments and stars such as Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods.
Rules for lawn tennis created in 1873 are still used today, though tennis has evolved from a game played on grass to one played on concrete, asphalt or clay. For the Love of Tennis describes the types of shots, rules of play, singles versus doubles matches and the difference in rules between amateur and professional men’s and women’s tennis matches. Four major annual tournaments - the Australian Open, The French Open, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open - are mentioned as well as tennis’s regained status as an Olympic sport in 1988. One minor flaw of this book is that the equipment’s measurements are stated in both metric and Imperial, but the diagram of the tennis court is only labeled in Imperial measure.
Generally, this is a great series, both for youngsters embarking on a new sport and for those who would just like enough information to understand the sport’s basics, but the books do not have enough pages to warrant their price.
Gail Hamilton is a teacher-librarian in Winnipeg, MB.
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