When kids get to high school and college, sports become an important part of your child’s life. Sometimes, sports are even the center of their world – for better or worse. We all know the benefits of high school sports and beyond. However, when it comes to youth sports, many parents are unaware of the benefits, only seeing youth sports as an activity for their kids to partake in. Although this is a major perk, this isn’t the only reason to put your kid in sports at an earlier age.
1. Great For Physical Activity
This is an obvious benefit to youth sports and yet seriously overlooked. Childhood obesity has been a problem in the country for over a decade. Although healthy eating shouldn’t be discounted, physical activity is one of the best ways to remain fit and healthy. Furthermore, youth sports encourages a healthy lifestyle. The earlier in life a person can live a healthy lifestyle, the easier it is to remain healthy.
2. Youth Sports Encourage Team Building
Although not all youth sports are team sports, kids can still learn and appreciate the importance of teamwork. Kids learn to work together, overcome differences, and set goals. Even if it’s an individual sport – such as skiing, figure skating, or cross country – kids still learn to cheer their other team members on, thus encouraging the notion of comradery and good sportsmanship.
3. Preparation for High School
Although sports medicine researchers have determined that it’s not best to specialize in one sport during childhood, youth sports can be good preparation for high school sports. It allows for strength building and physical activity without the hardcore competitive edge of high school sports.
4. Teaches Goal Setting And Determination
Kids that partake in youth sports learn goal setting and the determination it takes to reach those goals. Kids involved in sports learn how to make goals and also how to set a plan to reach those goals. They learn success and failure, winning and losing, and how to overcome obstacles. More importantly, kids learn at an early age how to handle both winning and losing in a gracious way.
5. Encourages Self Esteem
One of the biggest benefits to youth sports is the encouragement of self-esteem. In sports, children get the feeling of accomplishment when the progress at their sport, win, or succeed and reaching their goals. Furthermore, many kids who are involved in youth sports also tend to be high academic achievers, being able to focus, have good study habits, and achieve good grades.