Sports : A Major Influence On Youth Development Essay

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Benefits of Sports Nelson Mandela once said “sports have the power to change the world” (Sanchez, 2014). Sports are a major influence on youth development, affecting physical health, mental health, social skills, contributing to academic success, building character, and creating valuable lessons. They can provide opportunities to exercise, spend time with friends and compete in a healthy environment, while also reducing the rates of juvenile arrests, teen pregnancies and school dropouts (Foundation for Global Sports, 2013). In regards to the benefits athletics has on an individual’s well being, participating in sports can make an individual stronger and healthier both mentally, physically and socially. According to St. Barnabas Episcopal School, an accredited private school located in DeLand, Florida, “exposing children to physical activity at an early age will greatly benefit their social, emotional, cognitive, and physical well-being” (St. Barnabas Episcopal School, 2016). “Adolescents participating in youth sports are less likely to experience depression, use drugs, or be sexually active” (2016). Sports also reduce an individual 's risk of obesity, diabetes and other serious health problems. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “more than thirty percent of American teens are overweight or at risk of being overweight” (Diranian, 2016). Obesity has been an ongoing issue and it comes with serious health problems. For example, people who are obese
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