Many live, eat, and breathe it. The world of sports has some insane followers, but there are many who despise the physical contact or just view it as a waste of time. And while it is true that there is no right or wrong answer, many aspects of sports relate to reality. Being involved athletically can leave a major imprint on children’s self esteem, usually for the better.
A Laventille (Trinidad and Tobago subdivision) community activist, Muhammad Shabazz in Sports Doing Good remarked that “a lot of youth living in these hot spots are talented athletically and if they get the opportunities to develop, you may see a reduction in crime.” This is an example of sports having a benevolent impact.
For these “hot spots” where crime is the norm and youth are not being brought up in a positive manner, sports can be an outlet for young men and women to do something they love. Sports have the potential to be used as a mechanism for human and social development and numerous studies have also shown that sports can better the lives of individuals, particularly adolescents.
Activities that require any form of participation such as sports can give communities a sense of belonging and interconnectedness which can prevent people from engaging in non-social activities.
On an individual level, sports can provide a lot for teenagers. The values that I hold dear on the basketball court carry to my personal life. When I play with confidence, I feel confident walking in the hallways, in the classroom, and even at home. Being introduced to my teammates and having the chance to bond with them helps me to carry that bond outside of school. More than anything, when I’m calling directions and leading a group of kids, that sense of leadership is something I want to feel everyday all the time. I know that these are qualities that can lead to a healthy, successful life. Though sports are not for everybody, they certainly can make a difference in a wide range of lifestyles.
Sports can also help in the classroom as through athletics a person can recognize that cheating is not acceptable at any stage of a sports career or life in general. Being part of a team or an organized sport can help one understand the importance of teamwork and how connecting with other people can help solve any large-scale problems a person may face in life. Most of all sports helps one begin to learn that sometimes personal sacrifices may need to be made for the greater good. These are skills and assets that will stick with you for a lifetime.
Not all sports require extraordinary athleticism, nor do you have to commit all your time to them. However everybody should be able to recognize how sports can be a place for outcasts to fit in, for kids to stay out of trouble, all the while creating and maintaining relationships that could remain the rest of your life. Sports may not provide the kind of learning students are used to in geometry or biology, but the lesson learned can certainly be applicable if you find ways to apply it.