Olympic values and prevention of violent extremism
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How Olympic values and the idea of sports for development contribute to the prevention of violent extremism.

We know that seven Olympic rings signify three Olympic and four Paralympic values. The three Olympic values are friendship, respect, and excellence while four Paralympic values are determination, inspiration, courage and equality.

I look at these values in a different way, proceeding to the Olympic values, however friendship has different factors involved. It is based on collective values you share with other people rather than differences. The additional involved factors are sympathy, empathy, honesty, mutual understanding, compassion, trust and positive reciprocity.

The second value, respect, promotes fair play as you respect others’ opinions and play by the game rules. It also enhances the positive feeling of self-esteem in a person. The third value gives you hope as you work hard to achieve your life goals.

The growth of trust factor towards people and community create a sense of belonging in individuals towards other people/society. The thought of belonging re-connects isolated individuals with the community. In the past, extremists groups have been radicalising socially isolated people, chiefly youth. Olympic values prevent chances of radicalisation by engaging people through sports.

Concerning my research, reasons for violent extremism are divided into four factors, sociological, psychological, political and economic. When we use games as a tool for development, we teach youth different positive values, and they experience hope to achieve their goals. Also, participants learn how to trust each other, and this feeling integrates them by working as a bridge between individuals. The learning during sport for development and peace (SDP) activities helps us to separate youth from negative values, which create trouble.

The SDP benefits prevent four factors of violent extremism. So, if you see the pyramid, the negative values of violent extremism are being replaced through SDP activities. Further, these activities contribute to Olympic values, and in the end, it helps to achieve overall peace in society.    

Paralympics are already a way to promote inclusion for people with physical disabilities. The Paralympic values have been leaving a marvellous impact on the community. Further, equality, inspiration, determination & courage are contributing to peace through the prevention of extreme values. Equality you feel during sports increases your self-esteem and eliminates differences and discrimination. Athletes inspire others to get rid of deprivation and accept struggle. It also gives you enough courage to be determined and live as a sports person.

Teaching Paralympic values to youth particularly in developing countries through team-based sports activities eradicates extreme values from youth and contributes to the spirit of Olympics and peace. Previously, my research has discussed violent extremism prevention and sports for development and peace programmes, but this process also contributes to Olympic values, which are a way to promote peace around the globe.  

[This article has been edited by the Operating Team.]


Executive Director/Founder


Football (Soccer)
Target Group
People with Disabilities
Girls and women

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