I started playing basketball at the age of 10 by joining the local team Olympiacos Zacharo. I continued playing with the team until the second year of my undergrdauate studies. I loved basketball so much that I played every day (e.g., on Christmas eve or Easter) for hours. I love the possibility of playing alone, and it has proven a great anxiolytic throughout my life. Whenever I hold the ball I have the impression that I come closer to myself and by playing I always get to know myself even better.
Soccer was my first team-sport and I started playing at the age of 9. Throughout the years I have played in many positions, but mostly as a defender (i.e., center back) due to my build and height. I enjoy playing any type of soccer, be it 11-vs-11 or 5-vs-5. Many philosophical works exist about soccer and its meaning regarding human psychology and behavior. In any case, soccer is the most popular sport in the world and the reason is simple, you need one ball and you can play anywhere with anyone!
The first sport, although it is debatable whether martial arts fall into the category of sports, I wanted to do was anything related to martial arts. Hence, at the age of 8 the time came for me to start practicing Tae Kwon-Do, and continued practicing for about 7 years. What I loved about it was the flexibility and constant movement of your body. Tae Kwon-Do helped me to a great extent to achieve good movement coordination and body stability, something that many people lack actually. Later, at the age of 13 started practicing Karate, Shotokan in particular. Shotokan helped me to pay a lot more attention to the details, while it was a great way of meditation. Shotokan and Tae Kwon-Do are very different in style and principle, hence I believe I had the opportunity to experience martial arts from two different, but complementary, perspectives. By practicing martial arts you value human life more and often realize what the limits of the human body are.
Track & field, or probably the king of sports, is of particular importance. When people think of the ultimate limits of the human body, this is what they have in mind. Therefore, it has a special place in the domain of sports. As for me, I did high jump for about a year (I have to admit it proved to be great help for basketball!), while I tried long jump and shot put as well.
So far I have tried many sports, although I'd love to try a lot more. Handball is one of the most interesting sports I've tried and I'd love to practice with a team at some point. Apart from that, beach soccer and beach volleyball are very fun and energetic sports; I'm from Greece after all, with almost 5 months of summer weather ;-)
First game with men's team was at the age of 16.
2nd place in Peloponnesian kata competition.
Starter in all school teams of basketball, soccer, and volleyball every year during junior high school and high school.
At the age of 16 I was chosen to join the Olympic Academy located in ancient Olympia, due to my excellent performance at classes and sports.