6 Life Lessons Kids Learn from Playing Youth Sports

Playing youth sports is about more than winning and losing—athletes that participate in sports can learn several life lessons that can be used on a regular basis.

1. Competition

One of the most obvious life lessons that come with playing youth sports is competition. Teams and individuals go head-to-head in an attempt to outdo one another.

If this is fostered in a healthy manner, athletes can learn to translate their competitive nature on the field or court into real life.

Whether it be grades or a job or admission to a college or even a significant other, athletes understand that having a competitive edge can be the deciding factor in getting the most out of life.

2. Good Sportsmanship

Winning and losing in a respectable manner is a true sign of good sportsmanship. It also means that an athlete has patience and self control—being humble instead of bragging when winning; being calm and collected when instead of rude and upset when losing. This patience and self control is needed in life when things do not go the way we intend them to.

3. Teamwork

Being able to work well with others is crucial for any adult that wishes to succeed in life.

Whether it is at your job, a group project at school or even family members, there is always a need to be able to work well with other individuals.

This doesn't mean that everyone has to be best friends, but everyone must do their portion in order to complete a given task.

4. Resilience

If you participate in sports long enough, eventually you will experience intense competition that can lead to adversity. Learning how to deal with tough situations in the best manner is fundamental in life. At times we lose our jobs, we get into an accident, we injury ourselves, we have bad days—it happens to all of us. How we respond to these circumstances define our character.

5. Courage

The definition of courage is the ability to face difficulty without fear. In sports, this may mean going against a bigger, stronger, more athletic opponent. In life, there will be plenty of situations in which the odds are against you. In order to have that resilience needed, one must posses courage.

6. Hard Work

Nothing can replace good, old-fashioned, hard work. When you play a sport, the only way to stay on top of your game is to work hard and practice. The same holds true in life. Whether you aspire to be an engineer, teacher, doctor or lawyer, you have to constantly put forth the effort in order to be successful in your career.

There are many life lessons to be learned while playing sports. Teach your athletes how to appropriately be successful during competition and it will translate into their success in life.

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