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To Be a pro Fire Emblem Player and Debater

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Professional sports, as opposed to amateur sports, are sports in which athletes receive payment for their performance. Professional athleticism has come to the fore through a combination of developments. Mass media and increased leisure have brought larger audiences, so that sports organizations or teams can command large incomes.[1] As a result, more sportspeople can afford to make athleticism their primary career, devoting the training time necessary to increase skills, physical condition, and experience to modern levels of achievement.[1] This proficiency has also helped boost the popularity of sports.[1]

Most sports played professionally also have amateur players far outnumbering the professionals. Professional athleticism is seen by some[according to whom?] as a contradiction of the central ethos of sport, competition performed for its own sake and pure enjoyment, rather than as a means of earning a living.[1] Consequently, many organisations and commentators have resisted the growth of professional athleticism, saying that it was so incredible that it has impeded the development of sport. For example, rugby union was for many years a part-time sport engaged in by amateurs, and English cricket has allegedly suffered in quality because of a "non-professional" approach.[1] An important reason why professional sports has been resisted in history was that organisations for professional sports usually did not submit to the international sports federations, and could have their own rules. For example, the National Basketball Association was formerly not a member of the FIBA.

People involved in professional sports can earn a great deal of money at the highest levels. For instance, the highest-paid team in professional baseball is New York Yankees.[6] Tiger Woods is the highest paid athlete totaling $127,902,706 including his endorsement income,[7] which massively exceeds what he earns from tournament golf. Woods recently became the world's first athlete to earn a billion dollars from prize money and endorsements.[8] It would have taken the salary of 2,000 1980s professional golfers each making $58,500 to match up with Tiger Woods’ current salary. Samuel Eto'o is the world's second highest earning athlete and the highest paid footballer in the world, raking in £35.7 million (over $54 million) a year excluding off-field earnings.[9] The top ten tennis players make about $3 million a year on average. Much of the growth in income for sports and athletes has come from broadcasting rights; for example, the most recent television contract for the NFL is valued at nearly US$5 billion per year.[10]

Outside of the highest leagues, however, the money professional athletes can earn drops dramatically, as fan bases are generally smaller and television revenues are nonexistent. For instance, while the National Football League's teams can afford to pay their players millions of dollars each year and still maintain a significant profit, the second-highest American football league in the United States, the United Football League, has consistently struggled to pay its bills and has continually lost money despite allotting its players only US$20,000 a year.[11][12][13] In the United States and Canada, most lower-end professional leagues run themselves as affiliated farm teams, effectively agreeing to develop younger players for eventual play in the major leagues in exchange for subsidizing those players' salaries; this is known as the minor league system and is most prevalent in professional baseball and professional ice hockey. Otherwise, the league may be required to classify itself as semi-professional, in other words, able to pay their players a small sum, but not enough to cover the player's basic costs of living.

Most professional athletes experience financial difficulties soon after retiring, due to a combination of bad investments, careless spending, and a lack of non-athletic skills.

A semi-professional athlete is one for whom sport is not a full-time occupation. They are not amateur because they receive regular payment from their team, but at a much lower rate than a full-time professional athlete.

When applied to vocational tools and equipment, it refers to products that lie between the amateur and professional levels in both quality and cost, though nowadays the term prosumer is often used instead.

The San Francisco Olympic Club fielded a football team in 1890.[1] That year, the Olympic Club was accused by a rival club of enticing athletes to jump to its ranks with offers of jobs. An investigation by the Amateur Athletic Union ruled that the Olympics' practice was not actually professionalism but only a "semi" form of it, inventing the term "semi-pro". Although the Amateur Athletic Union did not like the idea very much, it decided that clubs could indeed offer employment without losing their amateur status or compromising the athlete.[2]

In North America, semi-professional athletes and teams were far more common in the early and mid-20th century than they are today. There are many benefits, such as collegiate eligibility and the attendant scholarships, in maintaining amateur status (unlike the Amateur Athletic Union, the NCAA forbids any sort of compensation outside of scholarships, including job offers tied to their playing). Eligibility for participation in the Olympics in some sports is still dependent upon maintaining a purely amateur status (although far less so than was previously the case), and such athletes may be supported by government money, business sponsorships, and other systems. At the same time, professional sports have become such a massive and remunerative business that even many low-level feeder teams can afford to have fully professional athletes.

Semi-professionalism is most prevalent in junior ice hockey, in which the top levels of Canadian (and European as well) junior hockey (most of whom are teenagers still in, or just out of, high school) are paid at a semi-professional level. This is not the case in the United States, where college ice hockey dominates at that age group; the junior leagues in the United States generally operate as fully amateur teams to maintain the players' eligibility to play in college.

Lower-end minor leagues and more obscure sports often operate at a semi-professional level due to cost concerns. Because the cost of running a fully professional American football team is prohibitive, semi-pro football is common at the adult levels, particularly in the indoor variety, providing an outlet for players who have used up their NCAA eligibility and have no further use for maintaining amateur status; as a sport that normally plays only one game per week, football is especially suited for semi-pro play. The National Lacrosse League, whose teams also typically play only one game per week, pays a salary that is enough to be considered fully professional, but players also are able to pursue outside employment to supplement their income.

There are several hundred semi-professional football teams at non-League level. The bottom division of The Football League (the fourth tier of the English football league system) has traditionally been the cut-off point between professional ("full-time") and semi-professional ("part-time") in English football. However, many teams in the top non-League competition, the National League have become "full-time" professional clubs in an effort to achieve League status.

Women's football in England is semi-professional at the top levels, as finances depend on promotion and relegation both of parent male teams and of the female teams themselves. Full professionalism for women is still in the planning stages; top female players often depend on other sources of income (such as coaching and physical training), and many attend university or college while playing.

In Scottish football, semi-professional teams compete at all levels below the Scottish Premiership, with most teams below the Scottish Championship being semi-professional.

Historically, English rugby league and rugby union have had one full-time professional division, with semi-professional divisions at the next level down. The second tier of union, the RFU Championship, became fully professional beginning with the 2009–10 season.

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Professional sports, as opposed to amateur sports, are sports in which athletes receive payment for their performance. Professional athleticism has come to the fore through a combination of developments. Mass media and increased leisure have brought larger audiences, so that sports organizations or teams can command large incomes.[1] As a result, more sportspeople can afford to make athleticism their primary career, devoting the training time necessary to increase skills, physical condition, and experience to modern levels of achievement.[1] This proficiency has also helped boost the popularity of sports.[1]

Most sports played professionally also have amateur players far outnumbering the professionals. Professional athleticism is seen by some[according to whom?] as a contradiction of the central ethos of sport, competition performed for its own sake and pure enjoyment, rather than as a means of earning a living.[1] Consequently, many organisations and commentators have resisted the growth of professional athleticism, saying that it was so incredible that it has impeded the development of sport. For example, rugby union was for many years a part-time sport engaged in by amateurs, and English cricket has allegedly suffered in quality because of a "non-professional" approach.[1] An important reason why professional sports has been resisted in history was that organisations for professional sports usually did not submit to the international sports federations, and could have their own rules. For example, the National Basketball Association was formerly not a member of the FIBA.

People involved in professional sports can earn a great deal of money at the highest levels. For instance, the highest-paid team in professional baseball is New York Yankees.[6] Tiger Woods is the highest paid athlete totaling $127,902,706 including his endorsement income,[7] which massively exceeds what he earns from tournament golf. Woods recently became the world's first athlete to earn a billion dollars from prize money and endorsements.[8] It would have taken the salary of 2,000 1980s professional golfers each making $58,500 to match up with Tiger Woods’ current salary. Samuel Eto'o is the world's second highest earning athlete and the highest paid footballer in the world, raking in £35.7 million (over $54 million) a year excluding off-field earnings.[9] The top ten tennis players make about $3 million a year on average. Much of the growth in income for sports and athletes has come from broadcasting rights; for example, the most recent television contract for the NFL is valued at nearly US$5 billion per year.[10]

Outside of the highest leagues, however, the money professional athletes can earn drops dramatically, as fan bases are generally smaller and television revenues are nonexistent. For instance, while the National Football League's teams can afford to pay their players millions of dollars each year and still maintain a significant profit, the second-highest American football league in the United States, the United Football League, has consistently struggled to pay its bills and has continually lost money despite allotting its players only US$20,000 a year.[11][12][13] In the United States and Canada, most lower-end professional leagues run themselves as affiliated farm teams, effectively agreeing to develop younger players for eventual play in the major leagues in exchange for subsidizing those players' salaries; this is known as the minor league system and is most prevalent in professional baseball and professional ice hockey. Otherwise, the league may be required to classify itself as semi-professional, in other words, able to pay their players a small sum, but not enough to cover the player's basic costs of living.

Most professional athletes experience financial difficulties soon after retiring, due to a combination of bad investments, careless spending, and a lack of non-athletic skills.

A semi-professional athlete is one for whom sport is not a full-time occupation. They are not amateur because they receive regular payment from their team, but at a much lower rate than a full-time professional athlete.

When applied to vocational tools and equipment, it refers to products that lie between the amateur and professional levels in both quality and cost, though nowadays the term prosumer is often used instead.

The San Francisco Olympic Club fielded a football team in 1890.[1] That year, the Olympic Club was accused by a rival club of enticing athletes to jump to its ranks with offers of jobs. An investigation by the Amateur Athletic Union ruled that the Olympics' practice was not actually professionalism but only a "semi" form of it, inventing the term "semi-pro". Although the Amateur Athletic Union did not like the idea very much, it decided that clubs could indeed offer employment without losing their amateur status or compromising the athlete.[2]

In North America, semi-professional athletes and teams were far more common in the early and mid-20th century than they are today. There are many benefits, such as collegiate eligibility and the attendant scholarships, in maintaining amateur status (unlike the Amateur Athletic Union, the NCAA forbids any sort of compensation outside of scholarships, including job offers tied to their playing). Eligibility for participation in the Olympics in some sports is still dependent upon maintaining a purely amateur status (although far less so than was previously the case), and such athletes may be supported by government money, business sponsorships, and other systems. At the same time, professional sports have become such a massive and remunerative business that even many low-level feeder teams can afford to have fully professional athletes.

Semi-professionalism is most prevalent in junior ice hockey, in which the top levels of Canadian (and European as well) junior hockey (most of whom are teenagers still in, or just out of, high school) are paid at a semi-professional level. This is not the case in the United States, where college ice hockey dominates at that age group; the junior leagues in the United States generally operate as fully amateur teams to maintain the players' eligibility to play in college.

Lower-end minor leagues and more obscure sports often operate at a semi-professional level due to cost concerns. Because the cost of running a fully professional American football team is prohibitive, semi-pro football is common at the adult levels, particularly in the indoor variety, providing an outlet for players who have used up their NCAA eligibility and have no further use for maintaining amateur status; as a sport that normally plays only one game per week, football is especially suited for semi-pro play. The National Lacrosse League, whose teams also typically play only one game per week, pays a salary that is enough to be considered fully professional, but players also are able to pursue outside employment to supplement their income.

There are several hundred semi-professional football teams at non-League level. The bottom division of The Football League (the fourth tier of the English football league system) has traditionally been the cut-off point between professional ("full-time") and semi-professional ("part-time") in English football. However, many teams in the top non-League competition, the National League have become "full-time" professional clubs in an effort to achieve League status.

Women's football in England is semi-professional at the top levels, as finances depend on promotion and relegation both of parent male teams and of the female teams themselves. Full professionalism for women is still in the planning stages; top female players often depend on other sources of income (such as coaching and physical training), and many attend university or college while playing.

In Scottish football, semi-professional teams compete at all levels below the Scottish Premiership, with most teams below the Scottish Championship being semi-professional.

Historically, English rugby league and rugby union have had one full-time professional division, with semi-professional divisions at the next level down. The second tier of union, the RFU Championship, became fully professional beginning with the 2009–10 season.

Yes.

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The rules of rugby union are defined by World Rugby (originally the International Rugby Football Board, and later International Rugby Board) and dictate how the game should be played. They are enforced by a referee, generally with the help of two assistant referees.

When playing a game of rugby union the overall objective is to score more points than the opposition through tries and goals. A try worth five points is scored when a team grounds the ball in the opposition's in-goal. A conversion (kick at a goal) is then attempted by either place or drop kicking the ball between the H-shaped goal posts and above the crossbar, if successful this is worth two extra points.

Penalties are awarded for major infringements or foul play and the team that receives them can chose to take a shot at goal in an attempt to score three points. They can also use the penalty to kick for territory or tap the ball and continue running it. Three points are awarded if a team member drop kicks a goal during general play.

The game of rugby union evolved from early association football, with the rules of play being agreed upon before the start of each match. Rugby clubs broke away from The Football Association after they left out rules for "running with the ball" and "hacking" when framing their universal code in 1863. The first rugby laws were standardised in 1870 and the International Rugby Football Board (later named the IRB) was formed in 1886. In 1930 the IRFB was made responsible for developing any new laws. These laws have changed over time. The point value for scoring tries has increased from zero to five, penalties were initially worth just two points and drop goals four. The ball has changed too, going from a pig's bladder to a rubber bladder and becoming more oval in shape. Player numbers were initially 20 each side, but reduced to 15 in 1877. The laws are still being tweaked, with some of the biggest recent changes being introduced in 2009.

The game is usually played on a grass field approximately 70 metres (230 ft) by 100 metres (330 ft). At each end of the field are the goal posts and an in-goal area. Games last for eighty minutes and are divided into forty-minute halves. Each team defends one end and attempts to score points through tries and goals. One team kicks the ball towards the opposition starting play. At half time they swap ends, with the other team kicking off. After a successful kick-off the ball is in general play and can be passed, kicked, caught, picked up or grounded by any player. The ball can be kicked in any direction, but must be passed backwards. Players attempt to stop the opposition running the ball by tackling them. Rucks form when at least one player from each team is on their feet and the ball is on the ground. Mauls are formed when the ball carrier is held by at least one of the opposition and a teammate is also bound to them. Players can compete for the ball at tackles, rucks and mauls in accordance with the laws.

Scrums are used to start play after minor infringements (knock-ons and forward passes) and when the ball becomes unplayable. All eight members of the forwards must be involved in the scrum provided the team still has all fifteen players present. Players involved in the scrum stay bound to each other and the opposition until it is finished and the rest, except the scrum-half, must be positioned at least five metres back. The two teams push against each other and the hookers strike for the ball once the scrum half puts the ball into the "tunnel" (gap between the two front rows). The scrum half must put the ball straight down the centre of the tunnel, if the scrum half deliberately puts the ball in at an angle to his second rows feet, (feeding the ball), the opposition are awarded the 'put in'.

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