Sports as a lifestyle choice: Chan Chun Sing


Senior Member
7 Jun 2011
To increase Singaporeans’ passion for sporting events, sports can be combined with other activities such as entertainment, said Acting Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports Chan Chun Sing on Tuesday.

Citing the success of the recently-concluded Formula 1 Grand Prix and the World Netball Championships in July, the minister said, “We have seen sports not just as sports for itself but sports also as a lifestyle choice that combines entertainment, sports and many other issues together.”

The F1, held last weekend, featured popular music acts like Shakira, Linkin Park and members of Korean band Big Bang G.Dragon, TOP and Seungri, while the world netball championships featured dancers in between matches, as well as a series of performances at its opening ceremony.

“It is an exciting way for us to relook at sports, to take sports to the next higher plane — not just elite sports, but mass participation sports that can unite and ignite the passion for the rest of the country,” said Chan, speaking at the opening of the inaugural two-day Asia-Pacific Sports Conference at the Grand Copthorne Waterfront hotel.

He also said that sports should be seen as an investment instead of a cost centre or as a business venture.

Sports can be used to build an individual’s character and prepare him for the future but to do so, will require long-term investment from the government, private sector and people, he noted.

If the sports sector is seen as a “cost centre”, it would be seen to be similar to charity work where people participate only when they have the means to, said Chan. Or if it is left entirely to the private sector, activities would be organised for the purpose of moneymaking and would result in the loss of the “soul and the spirit we want to see in sports”.

“So the attitude is most important, and we would like to encourage anyone, be it the public, private or people sector, to see sports as an investment for the future,” he said, calling for the three sectors to jointly build a sporting culture here. “An investment in the individual potential, an investment in community bonding and… an investment in the way that we want to ignite and unite a country.”

Turning to the ongoing construction of the new Sports Hub in Kallang, Chan pointed out that the Hub will not simply be an “iconic infrastructure” or hardware. It will also need the “heartware”, such as people’s passion, to move the project ahead.

“It is only with the passion of the people sector that we will be able to have exciting sports programs going forward,” he said.

By Jeanette Tan