Youth sports in this day and age seem to be getting a little less popular by each season. Other interests seem to be taking over by popular demand, which is unfortunate because there is truly so much value in playing on a team.  Preparing for the real world and what problems they’ll face in the future often is a smoother experience if you have years of playing on a sports team under your belt.  In addition to a brighter future, team sports can be helpful during the teenage years as well.

Staying Out of Trouble: One challenge of being a parent to a teenager is keeping them out of trouble.  Having minimal free time on your hands is one way to avoid mischief. A teen on a sports team has homework, practices, games and team activities to balance which leaves very little time for a social life outside of that.

Setting Goals: Setting goals as a group and working towards those goals is so important in life and sports is one of the best ways to enforce that hard work gets results. This also helps kids understand accountability within the team because you depend on each other and hold each other accountable.

Healthy Lifestyle: Being active is part of living a healthy lifestyle. Exercising every day is important and promotes good habits. In addition to working out, it is important with nutrition consumption. You can’t perform effectively in athletics if you are eating junk food. More importantly, you can’t perform in athletics if you are putting drugs and alcohol into your body.

Being a Part of Something Bigger Than Yourself: The best part about playing sports is belonging to something and making a difference. A group of people can get more accomplished than just one person.

Making Friends: One of the best friends you will make throughout your life are your teammates. Spending countless hours in the gym together, you really become a family. In high school, you can be on a team with kids who are older or younger than you and you are forced to work together whether or not you were friends before. Being on a team cuts across social divides and gives each member a sense of belonging.

Time Management: When you are a student athlete, you are forced to learn how to manage your time effectively. It can be extremely challenging at times to balance homework, studying, practices/games and getting enough sleep.  Student athletes learn to use there free time wisely. This is a trait that they will carry over to the real world.

Memories: The memories that you make throughout your life by playing sports will stay with you for the rest of your life. Big victories or upsetting defeats will remain with the individuals of the team long after the season is over!

“Even when you’ve played the game of your life, it’s the feeling of teamwork that you’ll remember. You’ll forget the plays, the shots, and the scores. But you’ll never forget your teammates.”