Cross country running is a sport in which teams and individuals run a race on open-air courses over natural terrain. The course, typically 4–12 kilometres (2.5–7.5 mi) long, may include surfaces of grass and earth, pass through woodlands and open country, and include hills, flat ground and sometimes gravel road. It is both an individual and a team sport, runners are judged on individual times and a points scoring method for teams. Both men and women of all ages compete in cross country, which usually takes place during autumn and winter, and can include weather conditions of rain, sleet, snow or hail, and a wide range of temperatures.
Cross country running is one of the disciplines under the umbrella sport of athletics, and is a natural terrain version of long-distance track and road running. Although open-air running competitions are pre-historic, the rules and traditions of cross country racing emerged in Britain. The English championship became the first national competition in 1876 and the International Cross Country Championships was held for the first time in 1903. Since 1973 the foremost elite competition has been the IAAF World Cross Country Championships.
American football, known as football in the United States, is a team sport played between two teams of 11 players with an oval ball on a rectangular field 120 yards long and 53.3 yards wide with goalposts at either end. The team in possession of the ball (the offense) attempts to advance down the field by running with or passing the ball. In order to continue their drive, the offense must advance the ball at least 10 yards down the field in a series of four downs. If they succeed, they receive a new set of four downs to continue their drive, but if they fail, they lose control of the ball to the opposing team. The offense can score points by advancing the ball into the end zone (a touchdown) or by place or drop kicking the ball through the opponent's goalpost (a field goal), while the defense can score points by forcing an offensive turnover and advancing the ball into the offense's end zone or by tackling the ballcarrier in the offense's end zone (a safety). The team that has scored the most points by the end of the game wins.
The complete rules are extensive. But simply, play proceeds as follows: a player on one of the teams begins a 'rally' by serving the ball (tossing or releasing it and then hitting it with a hand or arm), from behind the back boundary line of the court, over the net, and into the receiving team's court. The receiving team must not let the ball be grounded within their court. The team may touch the ball up to 3 times but individual players may not touch the ball twice consecutively. Typically, the first two touches are used to set up for an attack, an attempt to direct the ball back over the net in such a way that the serving team is unable to prevent it from being grounded in their court.
The rally continues, with each team allowed as many as three consecutive touches, until either (1): a team makes a kill, grounding the ball on the opponent's court and winning the rally; or (2): a team commits a fault and loses the rally. The team that wins the rally is awarded a point, and serves the ball to start the next rally. A few of the most common faults include:
The ball is usually played with the hands or arms, but players can legally strike or push (short contact) the ball with any part of the body.
A number of consistent techniques have evolved in volleyball, including spiking and blocking (because these plays are made above the top of the net, the vertical jump is an athletic skill emphasized in the sport) as well as passing, setting, and specialized player positions and offensive and defensive structures.