Back to school is such a great time for kids. Why? This time of year brings a lot of new and exciting things, including rekindling old friendships, making new friends, and participating in new group activities and sports. This year, my kids are most excited for fall baseball season.
Not only are sports fun and exciting, but they also provide camaraderie among kids. Have you ever thought of the many benefits of playing team sports? Besides being a ton of fun and a great way to stay active, participation in sports helps kids build social and teamwork skills.
Here are a few other great benefits to participation in team sports:
1. Builds confidence. When playing a sport, children have the opportunity to show their skills, gain greater self-awareness, and enjoy an activity that they love the most.
2. Provides consistent exercise. Most kids have too much screen time and not enough hands-on activity. Team sports commits your child to regular exercise, which helps boost immunity and contributes to overall physical health.
3. Develops relationships. Children build friendships with other children and their coaches, which is a great way for your child to expand their social skills and understand expectations.
4. Contributes to stronger academics. Children who play team sports are more apt to stronger academic achievement. Through sports, kids learn the importance of time management and discipline.
5. Helps put winning into perspective. This can be a real sore subject for some kids. Participating in team sports gives kids the opportunity to gain an understanding of both winning and losing, as well as the recognize the value of every teammates’ abilities in contributing toward a shared goal.
6. Teaches respect. In team sports, children learn to respect other authoritative figures, such as coaches, referees and umpires, as well as their peers.
7. Encourages family involvement. Your child is not the only one who will benefit from participation in team sports. Moms, dads and siblings can practice plays, attend games and cheer each other on, providing a bonding opportunity for the whole family. Head on over to my blog to check out some tips on how to stay organized on game days.
Crystal VanTassel is aPlay Ambassadorfor Let’s Play.
Individual Sports versus Team Sports
Organised sport can be broadly classed into two categories – individual sport versus team sport. Both types of sport have their advantages and disadvantages and there are plenty of reasons for taking up a sport in either class. However, most people find that from an early age, they tend to be drawn towards one or the other. That is not to say that someone who enjoys playing football cannot enjoy running, but it does means that most people have skills which translate more towards working alone or in a team.
Advantages Of Individual SportThe advantages of playing an individual sport are, as you would expect, numerous and manifold. Individual sports can often be more appealing to people who are new to sport thanks to the ease with which you can start to take part in them. As this is one of the biggest advantages of individual sport – that you can just go out and do it whenever you want, without having to wait for others. If you are a runner and want to go running, you can just pull on your trainers and get going.
Likewise, if you are a swimmer, you can head to the pool. You do not have to wait for a training session or worry about getting a team together to play with.
The other big advantage of individual sport which draws people in is that in competition, there is no one to blame but yourself. This particular aspect appeals to people who work better alone because they know that success is entirely dependent on themselves and there are no teammates to hold responsible if things do not go according to plan.
Advantages Of Team SportThe advantages of team sport are, as would be expected, in many ways, the opposites of those for individual sport. One of the biggest draws of team sports is that the responsibility for success is equally shared out between all members of the team. That way, if one player is having an off day then failure is not inevitable – although all team members are, of course, expected to do their best at all times.
Another advantage is the community aspect of team sport. This means that you have people to train with and measure yourself against. This can help you to push yourself further as you have a measure of what other people are achieving. This community aspect helps to spur people on, as within a team there is always a sense of camaraderie and teammates tend to encourage one another to achieve their absolute best.
The physical skills, such as being fast or strong, of sport can cross over between sports, such as the example above with running and football. But it is those social skills such as teamwork and leadership which can determine whether you are a team sport or an individual sport kind of person.
This will not prevent you from taking part in the other type, but as well as being better at one or the other, you will also find you enjoy one type more than the other, and as it is enjoyment which determines how much time we spend on something, this often tends to be the deciding factor in whether we take on a team sport or an individual sport as our primary pastime.
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