Kids who play team sports learn some incredibly valuable lessons, such as teamwork and learning how to trust one’s teammates. When a youngster is a member of a team, and they work hard in practice to develop and master certain skills, and they then see those skills pay off in a game, that makes a youngster feel more self-confidence. That raises their sense of self-esteem.
Those kinds of experiences go a long way in teaching and reinforcing to a child that hard work does pay off, and that trusting one’s buddies is a good thing. And even better, those kinds of feelings only enhance the fun and pleasure of playing youth sports.
When a young college graduate lands a job in the real world, almost invariably their employer will assume that they understand the power of being a “team player.” Well, unless that kid played team sports, he or she is not really going to know what their boss means.
In terms of adversity, yes, obstacles do pop up. But for those youngsters who are able to confront adversity in sports, that sense of self-discipline will propel them when life throws other roadblocks in their way.
In terms of the pressure to win, I’m certainly not going to advocate that “winning is all that matters,” because that’s not true. But I will say that kids who learn how to focus their efforts into improving their game learn the intangibles of how to concentrate their efforts in order to take their skills to a higher level. And that’s important. No one realistically expects a kid to become a superstar, but as a parent, you do want your child to become more self-confident and more proficient in their skills in life. I would argue that team sports helps dramatically along those lines.
In truth, I could go on and on about the values of team sports. And I readily acknowledge that there are road bumps along the way. But in the end, you would be hard pressed to find any youngster who participated in team sports who didn’t benefit from that experience.