Writing a strong sports research paper starts with choosing a strong topic. Like any other research paper, a sports research paper must have a strong thesis statement — the sentence that states the writer's main idea clearly. Therefore, before starting to write the sports research paper, the writer should research the topic carefully to form an argument or opinion about the subject. That way, the writer can then form a strong thesis statement, on which the rest of the paper will be based.
Choosing a strong topic means choosing a specific topic. For example, instead of writing a sports research paper about "Baseball in the 1990s," the writer might instead narrow the category down and research "How Steroid Use Affected Professional Baseball in the 1990s." This topic will be easier to both research and write about because it pinpoints a specific issue, and plenty of resources should be available for such a topic. This also narrows down the focus of the sports research paper, making it easier for a potential reader to navigate and ultimately understand.
The writer can choose from a myriad of topics within the sports community, ranging from controversial events to health issues. Historical events are a good place to start, since newspapers and magazines have often chronicled prominent events that were important within the sporting world. Once the topic has been chosen and narrowed down, careful research from reliable sources must be done. the writer must be sure to cite the sources he or she uses in the paper, especially if direct quotes or passages are used. It is helpful at this point to begin outlining the information the writer finds so that he or she may organize that information into a logical progression for the paper.
When research and note-taking on the specific sports issue has been completed, it is time to organize the information into an outline. The outline will dictate the order in which the specific issues the writer wants to cover will occur in the paper. It is important to ensure that the topic of each paragraph directly relates to the thesis — the writer should try to avoid straying too far from the main topic. Once an outline is formed, the writer can begin writing the first draft.
The second draft of the sports research paper should be written after the writer reads his first draft to ensure he has stayed on topic, has supported his thesis, has accurately cited sources, and has concluded his paper strongly. One more read-through is necessary to spot any grammatical mistakes, sentence structure issues, or other technical problems. Next, the final draft should be written; this should be a clean copy that clearly states the writer's arguments.