Growing up, I was always very active and involved in as many sports as I could possibly play. I played hockey, softball, golf, soccer, basketball, and even football. In more recent years, I have seen the significant impact playing those sports during my development has made on me. I have always believed that being active not only has a physical effect but can have a positive impact on cognitive performance. Recent studies have shown that physical activity can help prevent cognitive decline later in life. Although the benefits of playing sports outweigh the adverse side effects, if not coached or supported correctly, playing a sport can lead a child to become burnt out. This will eventually lead the child to drop that sport in the future. Being a golfer has taught me how to deal with mental and emotional stress. Stress can be useful in some instances, but too much of it at a young age is not beneficial.
Sports, whether team-based or individually based, are a great way to provide a variety of benefits for children in their development phase. According to the article” The Impact of Sports in Young Children,” some proven benefits are “Participation in sports can help build self-esteem and confidence, can motivate children to excel academically and can help build social skills.”(Lawrence). All of these aspects described above are all components of the stability of one’s mental health. It has been proven that physical activity or the playing of sports can help treat depression. Being a part of a team can give someone a sense of belonging and importance. Being a part of a group can help teach a child how to grow with others and ultimately be a leader. “Team sports teach your child about why teamwork is important, which can be helpful when he’s an adult and may have to work as part of a team to get his job done.” (Sutton). Learning how to be a leader at a young age will eventually help children in their adult years when being a leader is an essential factor for everyday life.
In the world we live in today; confidence is often a vast problem in young lives, particularly in young girls. Getting a head start on overcoming mental health issues can have a massive effect on kids “Kids who participate in sports are less likely to be depressed, have anxiety and exhibit bad behavior, according to the New York University Child Study Center.” (Sutton). Children are taught the importance of work ethic because, in sports, you are often praised for hard work. This encourages kids to work towards a set goal and ultimately build self-esteem. Overall, Sports and physical activity has many benefits, especially for young, developing children.