5 Benefits Of Sports For Children

One of the endeavors I advocate parents get their kids involved in more than any others is team sports, and for very good reason. I know of no better way to make sure kids get the lessons they need early on in life and start building the kind of values that can have a direct impact on every other thing they do as they grow older and mature into adults. Indeed, entire books could be written about the positive influence sports activities have on a child's life--an influence many carry into adulthood even if they never go beyond the amateur level.

Here are 5 to ponder:

1. Learn Life Skills

Many important life skills are learned in the youthful pursuit of sports. There are plenty of positive role models found coaching, mentoring, and refereeing in sports at this stage, and children get a chance to see how they live their lives and form positive relationships with them.

But it goes further than that. They learn to deal with competition and adversaries. They learn about setting goals and carrying them out. Not to mention that they learn about control as they get older, choosing self-discipline while their friends get distracted by less than healthy life pursuits.

2. Self Esteem and Confidence

Sports are also a great source of confidence. Whenever they achieve a goal or overcome a challenge, children become confident in themselves, but that self esteem also comes from being in control of your body and staying active. In fact, one of the easiest ways to improves someone's emotional well-being is by making sure they get a regular dose of exercise.

3. Stress Maintenance

All that exercise and great physical health are also contributors to maintaining stress. And as you well know, stress is one of the most dangerous things to the human body, leading to all types of diseases while at the same time lowering the quality of life we have while we are here.

Sports provide an outlet for that stress, and being in shape creates good, positive emotions that hold it at bay.

4. Academic Excellence

Much like sports-involved children are less likely to get into more unhealthy habits when they get older, such as drinking and running around causing trouble, even younger kids are more likely to excel academically if they are sports active. There are several reasons for this. For one, a healthy physical state is good for your body overall and improves your cognition and memory.

But to go further, most schools require a certain grade point average in order for children to continue doing what they love--which is staying on the team. This carries on especially later in life, and as children grow, this incentive really shows them that there are always consequences for the choices we make and the habits we form.

All great lessons for a growing child.

5. Physical Exercise

No article about the benefits of sports, no matter how short, would be complete without mentioning the physical benefits. It's no secret that a child active in this way will develop stronger muscles and a healthy cardiovascular system. What's perhaps even more important is that while they hold off child obesity, they are also setting a foundation for a fit life--a foundation they can take into adulthood with them.

At the end of it all, what you should really be asking yourself is, "Where do I sign up?" I'll say it again--there's nothing better you can do for your child than get them involved in sports at a young age and keeping them involved, even if these current economic times come down to cutting other things out of their lives.

These types of activities improve their lives in their health in countless ways that can last a lifetime. What more could a parent ask for?
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