Peng Quan and Tang Weixing, two Go players from Guiyang, the capital of Guizhou province, visited the Guiyang Liuchangmen Go School and their first Go teacher Pu Xueli, on the sidelines of a China Go League A match in the city's Yunyan district this year.
The scene of the two professional players meeting their teacher was warm and moving, but what Pu, who has been teaching the board game of Go for about 30 years, finds more gratifying is that the Go school is becoming more and more prosperous.
It is fortunate of Pu to take interest in Go and be a Go teacher. It has not only changed his life course, but also brought him the happy feeling of having many excellent students. If Pu was more interested in Chinese chess and chess than in Go, his career as a board game teacher would not have been so smooth.
The life of Guizhou-based crossbow shooter Wang Ren'ai forms a sharp contrast with that of Pu. Although he is a two-time crossbow shooting champions in the national traditional games of ethnic minorities, Wang still has to work as a truck driver to support his family after receiving training and participating in competitions.
Actually, the dramatic difference does not only lie between the two traditional sports of Go and crossbow shooting. Only a few traditional sports such as wushu, dragon boat racing, and Chinese chess are as well-known as Go in China. Even sports experts cannot tell how many traditional sports are undergoing hard times like crossbow shooting.
Where should we look for the centuries-old legendary traditional sports except a few popular sports? Many people will give the same answer: schools. It is a good but somewhat helpless choice to carry forward traditional sports in schools.
Traditional sports lack policy and financial support, talent, as well as marketers. Furthermore, many people are wondering what benefits traditional sports can bring. Certain local governments have found the answer through useful attempts: promoting local economy and tourism, improving people's health, and producing mental and physical pleasure.
The development of traditional sports should be a systematic project, and what is really needed is scientific planning and coordinated development. If traditional Chinese sports become more popular, young Chinese will probably be less fascinated by NBA stars.
Read the Chinese version: 民族体育之花如何浇灌
Source:People's Daily, author: Zhong Wen.