It is generally considered that artists are not likely to lead a healthy way of living. These people will prove you this common conviction to be just a fallacy.
- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was a professional athlete and participated in more than ten matches for Marylebon Cricket Club. In 1990 at the age of forty-one he managed to win the play against William Gilbert Grace, the most famous cricket player ever. That fact was later mentioned in the poem “A Reminiscence of Cricket”.
Being an amateur boxer Arthur Conan Doyle didn’t reach any significant success on the ring, but his skills helped him in his everyday life. During his practice on a ship he had to be physically strong and have a lot of stamina.
The famous writer is supposed to be the first to discover the mountains of Switzerland for skiers. During a stay in that country he ordered a pair of skies from Norway, being inspired of the beauty of the hills covered with snow. No one has ever thought about skiing in those picturesque places before. The first mountain Arthur Conan Doyle went down from was Jacobshorn, almost two and a half thousands meters high.
The writer admitted that picking up a few kinds of sport at a time he couldn’t do a great success in any of them, but the pleasure brought by by these activities was hard to compare with anything else.
- William Faulkner was eager to become a professional horse-rider but instead of this he was awarded a Nobel Prize in literature. His father owned a horse stable, so young William was accustomed to grooming horses and taking care of them. When he was eleven, his parents gave him a brumby which nearly killed him during the first ride. But that incident didn’t make the writer change his attitude towards horses. At the age of sixty when he was invited for delivering lectures in Virginia University William Faulkner started taking lessons in horse riding and appeared to be a good sportsman.
- Guy de Maupassant spent his childhood years living with his mother at the seashore where he started swimming. Later after the writer moved to Normandy he rescued a decadent poet from the sea who probably was trying to commit a suicide. When the author of Bel-Ami settled in Paris his friends could always find him at the bank of Seine. Guy de Maupassant became fond of rowing and could raw alone against the quick current for several hours.
There is an interesting coincidence that many writers and artists choose kinds of sports somehow connected with violence. For example Jack London and Ernest Hemingway are known to prefer boxing. Other writers, poets and artists were fond of the competitive kinds of sports. Maybe this fact could be explained by the necessity of the psychological discharge, as the mental work requires a lot of absorption and concentration and the excessive strain is to be released from time to time.