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A child’s academic growth is not limited to the classroom. While time spent reading and writing is essential, they also need to exercise and play sports. A curriculum that aims to instill a love for all subjects encourages a wholesome and productive environment for students to thrive. Sports is, therefore, the missing piece of the puzzle, even if it gets ignored. Unfortunately, despite knowing the importance of sports, schools still sideline them for other subjects. According to the data released by the Aspen Institute’s Sports and Society program in 2016, less than 36% of students played sports regularly.

Why Sports Should Be Given More Attention In The Curriculum

These numbers need to change. Sports hold numerous benefits for a child, from helping them stay healthy to keeping their emotional health in check. It is also a potential career option for students who enjoy sports. Therefore, to better support students to be their best, schools need to bring sports to the forefront.

Sports Are Now An Academic Discipline

Students are encouraged to pursue higher degrees in understanding sports that can lead them to prosperous careers, including in different areas of the sports industry. Parents can start browsing through different sporting degrees that align with their child’s interests when a child shows remarkable aptitude in sports at a young age. 

If prospective students want to become managers and work with athletes from secondary and college levels, they can easily qualify for sports administration degrees. By going for an in-depth sports degree, students get the opportunity to study the ins and outs of designing, maintaining, and managing teams. Students thriving in healthy environments with promising careers are all they want for any parent and school.

Top view of young man in sports clothing scoring a slam dunk while playing basketball with friends outdoors

More Participation In Classroom

Students who frequently play sports are more eager participants in the classroom. Sports cultivate a positive environment for students. They feel physical, emotionally, and mentally fulfilled, and their mood doesn’t dampen when they step back into the classroom, their mood doesn’t dampen. These students are willing to try and participate in class no matter how tedious the lecture seems.

For schools, interactive students are the cornerstone of a fulfilling learning environment. They keep the school spirit alive and may even influence their peers to step out of their shells and join the discussion.

Better Cognitive Function

A child’s cognitive development is a critical skill that enables them to be better at reading, critical thinking, and math. Sports encourage cognitive function by stimulating the blood flow to the brain. When a child runs, plays, and is engaged in physical activity, it pumps more blood around the body to increase oxygen flow.

The brain benefits immensely from this increased blood flow. It functions better, helping the child study and even improving critical thinking. Performing better at school boosts a child’s confidence, makes them happier, and makes them enjoy school more.

Encourages Socialization

Socializing is an essential interpersonal skill that benefits students’ transition to adulthood. Sports act as a catalyst in helping students learn this craft fast. Athletic meet and greets, team sports, and games hangouts motivate students to talk to each other. Socialization encourages communication and open-mindedness and even helps students become better at listening. They also become more forthcoming and ready to make friends wherever they go.

When students apply their newly found social skills in class, it cultivates a healthy classroom environment. Students readily make friends and initiate conversations without feeling shy or self-conscious. Learning becomes more accessible when students are harmonious with each other.

Better At Time Management

Another essential core skill students pick up from playing sports is time management. The trajectory of sports games is decided by how well each team uses the allotted time. For example, in basketball, the most priceless shot is the buzzer-beater. Taken before halftime, it only counts if the ball goes through the basket while the buzzer sounds.

So, student-athletes who train their body, mind, and strategic insight to align themselves with the so buzzer sound reaches a positive transferable skill. It also gives them a strong sense of time management, which they apply to all aspects of their lives. Proper time management helps students professionally and academically. They begin scoring better in exams, do their assignments on time, and still get plenty of time to sleep. 

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Helps Manage Stress

Stress impacts anyone at any age. Children, teens, and adults feel stress and respond to it differently. Some people, including children, tend to shut people off, while others act aggressively. For students, stress holds a different meaning. They must perform well in school and work on their personal and extracurricular profiles for a fruitful future. Therefore, sports become an outlet for them.

According to the Tennessee Chiropractic Association, 32% of teen athletes feel better after exercising and playing sports. Their body releases endorphins that help them feel better, have more control, and feel good about themselves. When a student feels more relaxed, they can think and plan better. So, whether they need to appear for a difficult exam, give a presentation, or deal with personal stress, engaging in a sport can help them calm down.

More Discipline

Discipline is essential for students in the classroom or out in the fields. Sports instill a strong sense of discipline in students. While playing a sport, a student-athlete knows their role, when to step in, and doesn’t act out of whim. The discipline gets so profoundly ingrained in students that they carry it through life and classes. They get dedicated to completing their work, attending classes, and finishing their start. The early students pick up discipline, the better they do academically. 

Why Sports Should Be Given More Attention In The Curriculum

Educational Institutes instill solid values in students while helping them develop their personalities. As academics teach students vocational skills and prepare them for their future, sports help complete the picture by becoming more resilient. Unfortunately, the continued sidetracking of sports deprives students of developing interpersonal skills necessary for their development. Not every student can focus with tremendous pent-up energy and poor stress management skills. Therefore, not every student will perform well unless schools invest and build better sports programs.

Alicia Trautwein is an Autism advocate, writer, motivational speaker, and dedicated mom of four. Alicia’s desire to advocate for Autism comes from her own autism diagnosis and that of her three children, niece, and brother. Her life’s mission is to educate on autism acceptance and change the world for future generations of autistic individuals.

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