Sports are viewed as a way to compete, stay physically active and healthy, but for children of school age, they are a tool that helps them learn skills and shapes them to be a productive member of the society. Sports at a young age are less about the sport itself and more about the competition, the social interaction, relationships and conflicts that occur during the games, afterwards and before. Many parents, and therefore their children focus more on the sport itself and winning which can deteriorate their relationships as well as self-esteem when this should be secondary to actually participating in a sport. Sports also keep the body healthy and active, which is important today due to children being less active and eating more, resulting in an obesity epidemic worldwide. Therefore, when selecting a school, it is important to consider whether they have adequate facilities for sports and recreational activities. Most private school such as private high schools Sunshine Coast prioritise sporting activities as their curriculum is not mandated by the state and have the freedom to allow more time spent in sports activities, especially during younger years. However, the benefits of engaging in sports activities at a young age are now widely publicised which has led to almost every educational institute, public or otherwise, having at least the minimal facilities to allow it.
This is regarded as the primary advantage of engaging in sports, and it is a significant advantage, as the physical exercise gained at a young age develops the body to be healthier and the increased activity makes children more energetic. Training for sports may also develop lifelong health habits in students, develop their posture and instil in them the importance of exercise and physical activity for health.
Mental and Social Aspects
The most important advantage gained by engaging in sports at a young age are the improvements to the mental wellbeing and the social skills. Competing at a young age teaches children to interact with their opponents cordially and promote sportsmanship among young children. It also improves their dispute resolution skills and teaches them to handle victory and defeat well. These are all valuable skills that will provide a significant advantage to students who learn them early in life. Sports also keep the mind active and gives students an outlet to express their feeling in a healthy way that may improve their long-term mental health.
Team sports in particular improve leadership ability in children. Team sports usually involve quick decision making in high stress situations. Being exposed to these situations allow children to handle them better and make mistakes where the stakes are relatively low, allowing them to succeed later in life.
It also improves discipline and self-esteem. Players in a team are expected to follow instructions by their coaches or team leaders. Players learn the value of working together in a team to achieve greater results than individually possible and to lead by example and carry their team to victory.