you're into sports, you've seen it happen. You've probably even experienced it: Football players shaking hands after four quarters of knocking each other around. Tennis players leaping over the net to shake hands with their opponents after a hard-fought match. Soccer players exchanging jerseys after an intense 90 minutes. Even boxers touching gloves at the beginning of each round, then hugging each other after beating each other into a pulp for 12 rounds.It seems like competitors in every event, from spelling bees to hockey, behave this way. What's going on?It's all part of sportsmanship, a great tradition in sports and competition that means playing clean and handling both victory and defeat with grace, style, and dignity.What Is Sportsmanship?Sportsmanship is defined as:playing fairfollowing the rules of the gamerespecting the judgment of referees and officialstreating opponents with respectSome people define good sportsmanship as the "golden rule" of sports — in other words, treating the people you play with and against as you'd like to be treated yourself. You demonstrate good sportsmanship when you show respect for yourself, your teammates, and your opponents, for the coaches on both sides, and for the referees, judges, and other officials.But sportsmanship isn't just reserved for the people on the field. Cheerleaders, fans, and parents also need to be aware of how they behave during competition. Sportsmanship is a style and an attitude, and it can have a positive influence on everyone around you.