Ah, well, I am guilty of using "Athletics" to cover Climb, Jump, Run and Swim, "Stealth" to
cover Hide and Sneak, and so on.
Actually I am using the Root/Branch skill system of the Ringworld RPG, where a character
first develops a general ability (in the case of Athletics a general fitness and agility) as a
Root Skill and then specializes in one or more of the Branch Skills (in the case of Athletics
for example Climb, Jump, Run or Swim - the character can do all that with his Root Skill,
too, but not very well).
The reason to use the general Root Skills is to avoid skill creep, which otherwise can ruin
especially a science fiction setting rather quickly. There are lots and lots of potentially use-
ful skills, especially technical and scientific ones, but there is only a limited amount of skill
points, so keeping the number of skills low in order to enable the characters to be good at
a sufficient number of important skills is a necessity.
As for the term "Athletics", I see it as one which is easy to understand and to connect with
physical skills which require physical fitness. The original meaning would be "Competitor"
(in the sports of classical Greece), but since few people will know this, I do not care.
"Mind like parachute, function only when open."