Written By Lewis Robinson / Reviewed By Ray Spotts
Adolescents have a lot on their plates, from academics to making decisions about college and careers, not to mention the time needed for friends, hobbies and interests. One of the most valuable ways children can spend their time is by participating in sports. There are a variety of benefits that playing sports, particularly team sports, provides. You may find more advantages than you ever realized after they've played for a while.
Better Physical Health
Playing sports has excellent physical health benefits. It's probably the first feature people think of when they think of sports. Not only does it make you physically healthier overall, but it also helps maintain your general health and stay at a healthy weight. It also teaches people to make healthy decisions about eating healthier and avoiding smoking, drugs and drinking.
Improved Mental Health
Physical activity is an excellent way of reducing and relieving stress and anxiety. For many athletes, just putting on their soccer cleats or softball gloves can boost their mood. The activity itself also contributes to the body's release of feel-good chemicals like endorphins - often referred to as a "runner's high."
Exercise boosts self-esteem as you work hard and watch yourself achieving your goals and seeing that others are proud of you. It also helps mental health by providing more of a support system made up of friends and coaches.
Participating in sports can help teens perform better academically for several reasons. It can teach kids to be more focused, goal-oriented and determined to accomplish what they want. Sports also require a lot of self-discipline, which everyone needs in all aspects of life.
Playing a sport requires you to learn and memorize, and repeatedly do different activities. Additionally, research has shown that participating in sports is linked with more success in a career. Part of the reason for this is that sports tend to give people a more positive attitude overall and more ambition in everything they do.
Sports can help kids with identity formation. By participating in sports, children can take their own path outside of home or school to create their identity. Many kids get pride from having the role of an athlete and being a member of a team.
Participating in team sports allows you to be a part of a group that's bigger than yourself. This means that you have a social network within that group. You can rely on your teammates, and they can also depend on you. Having this group of peers can be especially helpful to teens since they feel the extra need for social acceptance during this period of life.
Studies have shown that playing sports can keep kids safer from getting into drugs or trouble with the law, such as gang activity. Athletes are also more involved at school, so they're less likely to drop out of school than their classmates who aren't involved in sports.
Having a role in sports and being a part of a team can teach kids to work with others more effectively. This strategy can help in all aspects of life, such as at school and work, and with family.
Playing sports is good for teaching problem-solving skills. There's always a goal to be accomplished in sports. Therefore, whether you're working alone or with a team, you need to know how to efficiently and effectively solve the problem to succeed.
When participating in sports, kids will come to view their coaches as mentors and role models. These mentors can teach them to not only get better at the sport they're playing but also to inspire them to become better people. Coaches can help kids learn life skills through sports that they may not learn from teachers or parents.
Playing sports, especially team sports, offers children many advantages that far exceed a single match or season. Learning self-discipline, responsibility, the value of hard work and good sportsmanship can lead to well-adjusted, mature individuals who thrive throughout their life.
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Lewis Robinson is a freelance writer and expert in health and fitness. When he isn’t writing he can usually be found reading a good book or hitting the gym.
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.