Most of us participate in sports as we are fascinated about it. While some of us want to start a career, some of us think the best way to spend some time and have fun with loved ones. Sports provides many social and health benefits that are essential to us in several ways, besides just keeping us fit. Playing high school football underneath Friday night lights will be some of my most cherished memories. I formed goals, dreams, ambitions, all through the love of a sport and the advantages it brought me.
“Sport and recreation is not just about winning, it’s also about helping to develop greater, healthier, happier and safer communities.”Episode 11 SportsMania
So, let’s look at some of these advantages.
Being part of a sports team, such as soccer, basketball, or hockey, helps you to socialize with your team members during practice games and competitions. The closer the teammates are to one another, the better the dynamics of the team will be. And they will reflect on the performance of the team as well. Building these new relations with your team members will help you become a better human being. I remember days with Coach and the team cutting grass for the elderly and businesses in town.
Also, days where I couldn’t find a ride due to life situations and I could count on coach or a teammate to pick me up. All while returning the favor with every chance I received. You would then learn values like believing your teammates, supporting them in tough circumstances, facing problems, and working as a team. Even with individual sports, you develop new relations with your practice friends, coaches, or even your opposition groups, thus improving your social skills.
While it may not be as apparent as sitting down and talking about a group task, team sports have a lot of communication—both spoken and unspoken. Communication skills are essential to maintain a highly functional sports team, whether it’s listening to the locker room motivational speech, taking non-verbal cues from other players, or expressing thoughts during the post-game briefing. Firsthand, it takes a certain skill to call out defensive audibles/plays with a mouthpiece in after you did a 55 yard pursuit drill to make a tackle.
Build self-esteem and community sense
Sports are also said to strengthen five things: competence, trust, relationships, character, and care. At the core of this are self-esteem – a greater sense of self as a result of good socialization, improved relationships, and greater academic performance.
Team sports include a natural community for athletes. young people who play sports have a high degree of social support, and that the community spirit formed with teammates, coaching staff, and family members incubate the perfect environment for vital self-esteem development
Other than that, health benefits are the eventual result of playing sports. Let’s take a deeper look at a few of the major advantages:
Strength, stamina, and flexibility
Physical activity during sport helps to boost athletic strength and stamina by improving physical fitness. It also enhances – flexibility minimizing the risk of injury. Growing up I was heavily directing myself towards an obese diet. Until football gave me a reason to build myself up and change eating habits. After hard work you feel the results and soon the results outweigh any other outcome.
Aerobic fitness for heart and lungs
Sports include aerobic exercises, such as cycling and running, that also greatly boost breathing and heart rate. It helps to keep the heart and lungs stable and lower the risk of heart disease, heart attack, or even diabetes. I couldn’t run for five seconds without being winded until I learned what suicides were. For all my players and coaches out there, we know the puking sensation we get thinking about these.
There is evidence that exercising tends to improve your sleep. Sufficient sleep is vital to good health. Exercise can improve both the quality of sleep and the duration as well. It also helps with sleeplessness, sleep apnea, as well as other sleep problems. Hands down best sleep of my life is after grinding in 100-degree weather for 3 hours. I slept for 10 straight hours and woke up thinking I was in the Bahamas with bay leaves over my head. Yeah, maybe the fan was on, like I said it was a hot day.
Beat stress, anxiety, and depression.
Sport is one of the easiest ways to divert attention from routine stress. Physical activity increases the formation of endorphins, hormones regarded to help alleviate stress and pain. Playing can enable your mood by redirecting your mind from any feelings that upset you. Proper sports can help you cope with stress and anxiety. For myself, the only stress I could even bare thinking about was all the muscle stress from being sore. The drills helped boost decision making which helped with anxiety levels.
It Could be for You
Sports have several benefits for an individual, regardless of his or her age. It helps to develop a routine and lifestyle that will help them throughout their lives. In adults, sports can enhance their physical well-being as well as enhance the quality of life. So, start playing if you don’t want to miss out on those benefits.
Maslen, P. (2015, December 29). The Social and Academic Benefits of Team Sports. Edutopia. https://www.edutopia.org/discussion/social-and-academic-benefits-team-sports
(2019, December 11). 15 Health Benefits of Sports | Insports Centers. Insports Trumbull, CT – Adult & Youth Leagues – Soccer, Basketball, Lacrosse, Field Hockey. http://insportscenters.com/15-health-benefits-of-sports/
Eigenschenk, Barbara et al. “Benefits of Outdoor Sports for Society. A Systematic Literature Review and Reflections on Evidence.” International journal of environmental research and public health vol. 16,6 937. 15 Mar. 2019, doi:10.3390/ijerph16060937