|（School of Sport Science，Jiangxi Normal University，Nanchang 330099，China）
Abstract: Essentialism and postmodernism are two primary philosophical views. The authors probed into the es-sence of competition from the perspective of essentialism, and pointed out that although there are a lot of achieve-ments in the study of the essence of competition nowadays, many conclusions still failed to pass the testing of es-sentialism. Having evaluated such theories about competition as the theory of training and competition, theory of activity, theory of physical activity, and theory of dual essence, the authors analyzed the relations between competi-tion and playing for fun or game playing, and pointed out that competition, originated from playing for fun, is game playing gradually regularized. Lastly, the authors pointed out that physical activity is the essential attribute of com-petition, while game playing is the essence of competition.
Key words: competition；essentialism；playing for fun；game playing