It is important to teach kids that being active is not only fun, but also a main part of having a healthy happy life. Getting kids active on a regular basis can be easy by getting them involved in a fun and safe sport they will enjoy. In addition to learning how to set and reach goals, there are many benefits to youth athletics.
- Increased physical fitness decreases likelihood of injury and illness: All throughout life, even as adults, it is true that when you are physically fit, you are less prone to injury and illness. Kids are so active and always on the go without typically knowing their limits or when to quit. Teaching kids the value of physical fitness, knowing their limits and staying strong and healthy can be greatly aided by the structure of a good team sport. When your child has grown stronger and healthier via the structure of a knowledgeable coach and positive teammates, they will be less prone to common illnesses as well as injuries such as rolling an ankle while hiking with the family because they will have the strength and muscles needed to complete activities safely. Additionally, being physically fit and understanding what it takes to get and stay that way will foster a strong knowledge and understanding needed to lead a happy and healthy life into adulthood.
- Participating in competition improves reaction times and ability to problem solve: When working with a team in a fast-paced environment such as basketball, volleyball, or soccer you are taught to problem solve very quickly. The need to be able change course, direction or the entire plan or play at a moments notice becomes very important. Improved reaction times and ability to problem solve is a huge benefit from youth athletics across the board. From reacting quickly to a starting whistle to knowing exactly when to swing a bat at a ball hurtling towards you, learning these skills will be helpful in the future when it comes to employment, driving and reacting in an emergency.
- Team sports fosters the ability to work with and understand diverse people: Being part of a team, you are forced to learn about other types of people instead of only hanging out with your closest friends and family. It teaches how to not only get along with them, but to work with them on a team towards a common goal. Exposure to new people outside of our comfort zone is important for development and readiness for adulthood and future employment. While your family and chosen friends may not differ often throughout life, the team of people you work with either in sports or a job will always be changing. Learning to work with peers you wouldn’t normally interact with or enjoy being with is an important life skill for success and happiness. Differences will arise with other teammates, but lessons are learned in order to keep playing their sport and reach their goals. These skills will be drawn upon to work with different or difficult coworkers and employers in the future.