Team sports are a great revenue-building system for high schools. Games and meets bring in money for the school and bring people to the campus who wouldn’t otherwise have the chance to visit. Team sports also have many benefits for the students who participate in them. It’s a great idea to get your child involved in team sports early so they will have something to look forward to in high school, and a place to belong once they get there.
The most obvious benefit of participation in team sports is getting kids physically active. Many teenagers reach a point where they would rather sit inside and play video games or surf the Internet than go outside and play. Getting a teenager to practice and games even a few times a week can significantly increase their desire for physical activity, and it can also reduce the risk of obesity and other health problems later in life. If a teenager enjoys a team sport in high school, there is a strong likelihood that he or she will continue that sport through college and after, helping them remain physically active throughout their lives.
Teamwork and Social Skills
Another obvious benefit of team sports is to build teamwork and social skills. Working with a team towards a common goal – winning the game – is almost unintentionally teaching your teenager how to get along with his or her teammates. This is a very useful skill that can translate into doing group work with classmates, solving problems with siblings, and, later in life, participating in a team in his or her job. As the team works together, students learn valuable problem solving skills. On the team, they figure out how to get what they need and how to reach their goals. These problem solving skills can also benefit them in school and in their careers. Along with teamwork and problem solving comes the building of social skills. In order to participate on a team, athletes must communicate with their teammates. Practicing these communication skills can benefit teenagers as they figure out appropriate and not appropriate ways of communicating.
A benefit of participation in team sports that is not entirely obvious is the extra family time that comes with sports. When a teenager is honing his or her skills for the team, this can be an excuse for parents and siblings to play catch in the yard and bond over the shared love of a sport. Watching your kids play sports can also lead to great family time in the bleachers, as well as when you go get some ice cream after the game. Families can also bond while being spectators at professional sporting events. Taking your student to see professional athletes can be a great family activity, as well as a fantastic learning activity for your young athlete.
Coaches as Mentors
In this day and age, when students are frequently looking to less than positive role models, it is important for students to have a plethora of very positive adult role models in their lives. By allowing students to participate on team sports, all the coaches, assistant coaches, and trainers become role models for the young students. Students often feel like they can talk to coaches and go to them for advice. While you would ideally love for your teenager to seek you out for advice, that might not be your teenager’s ideal situation. Knowing he or she has a responsible adult to go to, even if that adult isn’t you, can put your mind at ease and ensure your child gets good advice.