The Benefits of Encouraging Your Child to Join a Sports Team

The Benefits of Encouraging Your Child to Join a Sports TeamOne of the biggest challenges facing children today is inactivity due to video games and other activities. Schools are cutting physical education classes and making recess shorter, decreasing the amount that a child can move at school. Organized sports offer a good solution to help children begin to move more. Parents who are concerned about promoting a healthy lifestyle are turning to sports teams to help their children exercise. Sports also offer children additional opportunities to socialize and build self-esteem. Team sports offer many benefits to children and are a great resource for most parents.

Team Sports Improve Physical Fitness

One of the biggest benefits of sports is that meeting for practices and games can encourage physical fitness. Conditioning is often a big part of practices, improving how long a child can exercise without becoming winded. Additionally, sports make exercise more fun, since children are working together for a common goal. Many sports work on building endurance in their players, and as children get older, their conditioning will improve. Running laps or drills are often part of practice and a great way to fit in extra cardio. As your child becomes more serious about the sport, a coach may also encourage strength training to help improve their overall fitness.

Playing Sports Improves Social Skills

Working together as a team helps to improve social skills. Children who are normally quite shy may shine on the playing field. Playing sports gives children the opportunity to interact with each other in a structured environment and perhaps even make new friends. When you work together as a team, it helps to build bonds and friendships that can last a lifetime. Additionally, children begin to think beyond just themselves and start thinking about how their actions affect others. When a child is working toward a bigger goal with a team, the children learn about making sacrifices that benefit more than just themselves.

Learning Sports Can Build Self-Esteem

Parents who are concerned about their children's self-esteem often consider signing them up for team sports. As their skills improve, so can a child's self-esteem. Team sports give children the opportunity to set specific goals and to work to reach them, and working toward a specific goal and achieving it helps to build a child's confidence. It also provides a support network, with team members encouraging each other to improve and cheering each other on to reach their goals. It is important to find a team that focuses on this if you are concerned about building self-esteem. The coach will set the tone for the entire team and can also help to build self-esteem. Often, success on the field can lead to increased confidence in the classroom as well.

Playing on a Team Teaches the Importance of Hard Work

Another benefit of team sports is that they teach children the benefits of hard work. When children are young, they may begin with simple sports like T-ball or a more relaxed version of soccer. Each year, as they continue to play, the skill level and expectations increase. Coaches work to help each child develop specific skills, and the children work to acquire these skills. Children can see the correlation between their hard work and how well they play each game. This gives children a chance to learn how working hard can pay off. They can see that everyone must work hard to make the team stronger.

Team Sports Can Benefit Children With Attention Issues

Another benefit of team sports is that they can help improve concentration and burn off excess energy. Children with ADHD can benefit from learning to focus on physical tasks and being able to move around while they play. However, it is important to pick the correct sport, one that's likely to keep the child's interest throughout, and it's also a good idea to find a coach who works well with kids who may be struggling with these issues.