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Sports Participation Good for Teen Health

Sports Participation Good for Teen HealthA new study suggests playing sports helps teenagers physically, socially, and mentally.

West Virginia researchers found that middle-school teenagers who are physically active and play on sports teams are more satisfied with their life and feel healthier.

Although the benefits of physical activity are well documented among teenagers, middle school children are an understudied population in adolescent physical activity research.

The authors explored the relationship between physical activity (including sports participation), life satisfaction and self-rated health concurrently, for the first time, among 245 middle school students in grades 7 and 8.

The 12- to 14-year-old boys and girls were asked to fill in questionnaires assessing their physical activity levels, their overall satisfaction with life and asking them to describe their own health.

In boys, participation in vigorous activity had no effect on either life satisfaction or self-rated health. In girls, those who had taken part in vigorous activity in the last week were significantly more satisfied with their life compared to girls who had not, but participation in vigorous activity had no effect on their self-rated health.

Playing on a sports team was linked to higher life satisfaction in both boys and girls. In addition, boys were five times more likely, and girls 30 times more likely, to describe their health as fair or poor when they were not playing on a sports team.

The authors conclude: “Our study demonstrates the benefits of youth sports participation on self-rated health and life satisfaction among young youth at a critical juncture in adolescent development.

“Our findings suggest that sports team participation may enhance school connectedness, social support and bonding among friends and teammates.”

Dr. Keith Zullig and Rebecca White’s paper is published online in the journal Applied Research in Quality of Life.

Source: Springer

Sports Participation Good for Teen Health

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2015). Sports Participation Good for Teen Health. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 25, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/news/2010/09/23/sports-participation-good-for-teen-health/18591.html

 

Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 6 Oct 2015
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 6 Oct 2015
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.