Learning Activity 1 Speaking
Work with a partner or in a small group. Discuss the following and make notes in the space provided.
My answer My partner’s answer
1. What do you need to think about when buying a basketball?
2. What do you need to think about when buying a squash racquet?
3. What do you need to think about when buying sports shoes?
4. What do consumers need to know about themselves before they choose items such as sports equipment or clothing?
S27 Learning Activity 2
Read the sample review about a tennis racquet below. Identify the main idea and purpose of each paragraph and fill in the right column with a, b, c or d. The options can be used more than once.
a. Establishing the topic b. Points for consideration c. Comments on the product d. Recommendation
Sample Product Review – Tennis Racquet
There are so many models of tennis racquets in the market these days that one is spoilt for choice, but making the right choice is very important because it can mean years of pleasure and satisfaction in playing the game.
When you choose a tennis racquet, there are a number of things you need to think about. You need to consider your skill level, your size, and your playing style. Based on these factors, you then choose a racquet with the weight, balance, and size that will give you the best performance.
Weight: Basically you need to choose the heaviest racquet you can handle easily. Avoid racquets that are too light as the lightness means more shock will go to your arm and wrist, leading to pain in the joints over time.
Balance: Whether the weight of the racquet is distributed more towards the head (head-heavy) or the butt (head-light) is as important as the absolute weight of the racquet. A head-heavy racquet has more power; a head-light racquet is easier to handle but less stable.
Size: As a general rule, a larger head gives you more power and a greater sweet spot, but less control. That is why an oversized racquet may be more suitable for a beginner while the intermediate or advanced players may go for a midsize or mid-plus one.
Once you have thought about these factors, you can decide which category of racquet you are interested in. There are power, tweener, and control racquets. Power racquets are light and large ones. They are more suitable for beginners. Tweeners (from the word “between”) are of medium weight and size and are suitable for intermediate players. Control racquets, with greater weight and smaller size, are suitable for the more advanced player.
I looked at the Ace 4, a superb tweener racquet for a wide range of players.
The Ace 4 offers an outstanding blend of power and control for intermediate and low-level advanced players, though beginners will like it too because this medium-weight frame is easy to handle. The mid-plus head size and large sweet spot enables the players to generate lots of power, even on off-centre hits. The racquet also offers great comfort because of its excellent built-in shock dampener.
Ace 4 is a solid, all-purpose frame that will perform well in any situation, at the baseline or the net. Priced at $650, the Ace 4 is an affordable racquet that represents excellent value for money. If you wish to perfect your skills for outstanding tennis performances, Ace 4 is definitely what you should get!
S28 Learning Activity 3
Read the product review on a jersey below.
Review on AC Jersey
What is your primary concern and reason for buying a new jersey? Is it solely because your favourite soccer or basketball team has a new strip and you feel like following? Well, there are more factors for a smart consumer to consider when choosing a new jersey.
Fabric: Sports fans like you are very likely to play sports in the latest jersey of their favourite sports teams or stars, but make sure you choose an absorbent fabric that helps wick sweat away and block the unpleasant smell. This keeps you dry and comfortable.
Durability: Jersey of good quality should not shrink or deform after machine wash.
Design: There are a variety of designs to choose from such as long and short sleeves, crew-neck and V-neck. Long-sleeved jersey is usually slightly more expensive than short-sleeved one. Choose the type which suits you the most.
AC jersey is famous for its timeless design. It is soft, very well-ventilated and comfortable. The highly durable jersey does not shrink, lose shape or fade after repeated machine wash.
Short-sleeved outfits are only priced at $200, which is definitely good value for your money. For another $50, you will have your name and a lucky number decorated on the back of the jersey.
Isn’t it worth adding one to your wardrobe?
1. Refer to the review you have read and answer the questions below.
a. What factors does the writer suggest that we consider when buying a jersey?
b. Summarise what the writer thinks about the AC jersey in around twenty words.
c. If you are considering buying a jersey, would you go for AC jersey after reading the review?
2. Compare the review with the one on tennis racquet in Learning Activity 2. Do the writers introduce the topic and conclude the review in the same way? Explain your answer.
S29 Learning Activity 4
1. Choose a sports product you have bought or would like to buy.
2. Do some research in sports shops or on the Internet.
3. Jot down some notes in bullet form in the table below.
4. Write a product review similar to the one in Learning Activity 3. You may refer to Learning Activity 2 for the structure of your review and the language notes on the next page for help.
Product Research Information
Useful vocabulary/expressions for writing a sports product review:
y customers/potential purchasers/shoppers y sports products/items/goods/gear y satisfy/meet their needs/requirements y buy/purchase y choose/select/go for/opt for/pick y choice/selection/option
y is suitable/right for hikers
y excellent/amazing/fantastic/superb/incredible/remarkable/incomparable 2. Talking about price
y at the top/bottom end of the market y at the upper/lower end of the price range
y ____ is/are medium-priced/reasonably-priced/inexpensive/cheap y ____ is/are dear/expensive/overpriced
y I pick up a good bargain from the market.
y We bought the ____ (e.g. fishing gear, table-tennis racket) at a low price/for a bargain price.
y This is good value for money/is worth buying.
3. Talking about other factors for consideration
y Materials: The ____ (e.g. shirt) is made of natural fabrics.
y Performance (how well it does something): It absorbs sweat effectively.
y Appearance (how it looks): There were glowing logos on both sides of the ____ (e.g. running shoes).
y Durability (how long it lasts): The ____ (e.g. socks) do not lose their strength or shrink easily.
y Maintenance (what you need to do to keep it in good condition): It is easy to care for and cold machine washing will do.
y Price and availability: It is available at an affordable price in all department stores and sports shops.
Useful language patterns or sentence structures for writing a sports product review:
1. Suggest + gerund or that clause
y I suggest buying Intelligent running shoes with the cushioning effect.
y I suggest (that) joggers buy Intelligent running shoes with the cushioning effect.
2. Recommend + noun or that clause
y I recommend Intelligent running shoes with cushioning effect to all joggers.
y I recommend (that) all joggers buy Intelligent running shoes with the cushioning effect.
3. The comparatives and superlatives
For shorter adjectives with one or two syllables, “-er” and “the -est” are used for comparison.
For adjectives with more syllables, “more” and “the most …” are used. Here are some examples:
y Cotton shirts are more absorbent than nylon shirts, but nano-garments are the most absorbent.
y Intelligent running shoes will be cheaper next year with mass production.
Note: words such as “favourite” and “unique” cannot be used with more/the most because they already mean that. In general we use between for two things and among for more.
“the -er, the -er” pattern:
The heavier the racquet the more powerful the strokes can be, but the more tiring for the player.