Parents' Corner

The Benefits of Team Sports for Kids

Posted by Dave Smith on Wed, Jan 10, 2024 @ 08:00 AM

Participating in team sports offers a number of benefits for kids. Sure, there are advantages to physical health. But involvement in team sports also helps shape a child’s mental, emotional, and social health. 

We’ll explore those benefits here and share even more ways team sports for kids are beneficial. 

How Involvement in Team Sports Supports Children

Health.gov points out how sports participation has shown to reduce depression, anxiety, and stress in children while boosting creativity, cognitive abilities, and life satisfaction. 

Engaging in sports activities also helps with weight, cardiorespiratory fitness, muscular fitness, and bone health while reducing the risk for diseases such as diabetes and cancer. 

The government also shares additional benefits of team sports for kids, including improved academic achievement, teamwork, life skills, empathy, self-control, perseverance, and leadership qualities. This suggests the potential for educational success, with high school athletes more likely to graduate from a four-year college—and even a higher potential for career success. 

The range and depth of benefits of participation in team sports is notable, and ActiveForLife.com explores nine of them in more depth, including the opportunity to develop friendships. As children spend time together practicing and playing sports, they tend to build trust in one another as the sports season progresses and often make new friends as they focus on their common goal. 

Sports participation can also enhance critical thinking as children solve problems and strategize how to achieve goals. Development of these skills helps with sports accomplishments as well as academic ones. Team sports for kids assist in building character; for example, they can learn respect by showing up on time and kindness and empathy by encouraging someone who is struggling. Plus, children can learn about being responsible for their own actions in a game. 

Sports-related activities can also teach children, as they lose and win games together, to accept outcomes and react appropriately to them. By saying “good game” after each event, win or lose, children can practice kindness in challenging situations and avoid blaming one another after losses. They learn to be supportive of others on their team and empathic toward the other team. 

What You Can Do As a Parent to Support Your Kids

As a parent, you have an opportunity to offer support to your children and serve as a role model as they play team sports, says VeryWellFamily.com

You can provide them with healthy foods, demonstrate healthy active practices, and offer them helpful information about why staying active and eating nutritious foods are so important. You can also model respect: of other parents, other athletes, coaches, and referees. 

Team Sports Are Part of Horizon’s Activities!

Recently, Horizon’s Lorain County Centers kicked off a sports season of their own: basketball for children aged kindergarten through 8th grade! The first game was a scrimmage between South Elyria and Cascade centers as participants played hard, helped one another, and cheered one another on while they demonstrated great sportsmanship. 

Discover more about our school-aged programs, which have an ongoing focus on physical and wellness development among other key goals. 

Horizon Education Centers provides child care and afterschool programs in Cuyahoga County and Lorain County, Ohio.

Topics: Activities for Children, Afterschool

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