What is Areté?
The beginnings of Greek Sport and concepts of “an athlete” are attributed to rituals developed within clans. Footraces besought the gods for good crops: games and contests honored the dead at funeral ceremonies: and both footraces and chariot races were used to establish the prowess of the clan’s leader.
Winners of contests brought honor to their families through their victories and slowly, the tradition of the elite athlete developed as man used sport to prove his “ARETE” – his total excellence – physical, mental and moral. A noble attempt did not prove nobility: success did. Greek society had no praise for the loser, regardless of how valiantly he struggled: success, not intention, made the man!