The Benefits of a Team Sport

Team sport is any sport where a group of people, called a team, work together towards a common goal. These goals may include winning the game and beating the opposing team. In some sports there is a direct competition between teams but other sports do not involve an opposing team and scoring points. Examples of team sports are football, basketball, hockey, soccer, baseball and swimming among others.

In addition to promoting healthy lifestyles, team sports help kids learn about the importance of working with others. By teaching them how to compromise, cooperate and problem solve with their teammates, they’ll be better equipped to handle setbacks in life – something we all face from time to time.

According to the Janssen Sports Leadership Center, team sports bolster the five C’s: competence, confidence, connections, character and caring. These benefits also translate into other aspects of their lives outside of the sports arena.

Historically, it was believed that the best teams were those that had the most “star players”; however, coaches, athletes, and fans soon began to realize that it is the quality of teamwork that determines the overall success of the team. In fact, researchers have found that a key predictor of team performance is the ability to interact and coordinate with teammates. This is referred to as the “ability-to-play-with” and is different from other skills that are relevant in team sports, such as running, jumping, shooting or passing.

Even for elite athletes, the team approach is beneficial. Kim Batten, a 1995 world champion in the 400m hurdles, believes that it’s a key component to track’s success at the youth and collegiate level, especially when competing in relay races.

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