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Would you like a happier teen? Then encourage them to play sports. According to a new study published in Applied Research in Quality of Life, teens at the middle-school level that play teen sports feel healthier and are more content with their lives.
Benefits of Middle School Sports: What a Study Shows Participating in sports in middle school positively affects all aspects of a young teen’s life.
When researchers asked 245 middle-school kids to complete questionnaires about their activity level, general health, and outlook on life, they found that girls who belonged to a sports team or had taken part in vigorous physical activity in the last seven days were more satisfied and optimistic about their lives.
Boys who played on a sports team were also more satisfied with their lives and described their health as better than young males who didn’t take part in sports.
For both sexes, sports in middle-school school improved the overall sense of satisfaction and general health young teens experienced – and that’s good news for parents.
Why Are Sports in Middle-School So Beneficial for Teens? Researchers believe that sports in middle-school benefit teens, not only physically, but mentally and socially as well. Not only do teen sports reduce the risk of obesity, but they help build a stronger body image - as young teens discover what they’re capable of doing. It also helps build agility, endurance, flexibility, strength, and improves coordination.
Teen who participate in sports in middle-school also get psychological and social benefits. Teen sports participation builds self-esteem, leadership skills, and a sense of responsibility. Teens involved in sports often do better academically and are less likely to use drugs, alcohol, or be sexually active. Middle-school sports also benefit them socially by building strong interpersonal skills and showing them the value of working as a team. These skills will be important to them later in life - when they enter college or a career.
Benefits of Middle-School Sports: The Bottom Line?
Young teens that play sports are happier and have better overall health. Plus, they’re building skills that will last a lifetime. Encourage your teen to get involved in sports - whether it’s tennis, gymnastics, track, football, basketball, volleyball, soccer, or swimming. With so many options available, there’s a middle-school sport for almost every teen.
References: Eurekalert.org. "Young teens who play sports feel healthier and happier about life"