Aside from the obvious physical benefits of playing sports in schools, there are a number of other ways in which sports help children thrive in terms of their social and emotional wellbeing. Physical activity provides an opportunity for them to step away from the TV or computer screen and use their brains in different ways. The feel-good endorphins released through sport also contribute to good mental health. Read on to learn more about the benefits of sports in schools from a boarding school in Ireland

Social skills

Having a common interest with others who play the same sport can help children improve their communication and interpersonal skills, and form lasting friendships. Team sports create a sense of camaraderie and children learn the value of teamwork and supporting each other to achieve a common goal. They also learn about responsibility and accountability, and that others are relying on them to play their part, so sport is great for promoting positive relationships. 

Time management

Playing sports requires dedication and commitment, and gives children an opportunity to practise time management as they juggle their different responsibilities. They’ll learn about discipline and the importance of showing up and following through on commitments, and how to use their spare time well. They’ll also gain the ability to design a schedule and stick to a specific routine, a skill which will benefit them throughout their life. 

Increased confidence

Playing sports can help boost children’s confidence and self-esteem. Receiving praise from a coach or teammates will make them feel good about themselves and they’ll learn what they’re capable of. They’ll also learn to receive constructive feedback and apply it to future efforts, working on their weaknesses in a positive way. Getting into the habit of welcoming helpful criticism will enable them to respond positively to feedback they receive in the future during their studies or in the workplace. 

Better academic performance

Participating in sports can improve cognitive functions such as memory and problem-solving skills, which can have a positive knock on effect on children’s academic performance. The sense of discipline they get from sports can also help them when it comes to creating and sticking to a revision schedule or completing homework assignments. Sports can also help children learn to focus and concentrate on the task in hand, an ability which will help them absorb information better in the classroom. 

There are so many benefits to playing sports in schools, so try to encourage your child to find a sport they love and will stick at. 

Paul Watson