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Athletics & Youth

The benefits of athletics are many, especially when it comes to health, nutrition and physical rewards like greater levels of strength, agility and endurance. However, athletics appear to offer many other beneficial effects on youth who participate in them. From greater levels of self-esteem and lower levels of teen pregnancy to greater levels of academic discipline and lower levels of participation in antisocial activities, athletics appear to have many beneficial effects on children from eight to eighteen according to the literature.

Adolescence is a difficult time for most young people and athletic participation seems to make this transition from childhood to early adulthood less problematic for many who participate in sports. Currently, many adolescents in this age group suffer from substandard academic performance, antisocial behavior and activities, teen pregnancy, drug use and a host of other issues. However, the research on teens who involve themselves in athletics suggests that this participation is often beneficial in reducing or eliminating many of these issues typical to children from eight to eighteen. It appears the benefits for youth span gender boundaries as girls and boys are reported as mutually enjoying the positive effects of sports participation. One program aimed at promoting more athletic involvement among girls is Arlington Youth Services. The program is aimed at getting more girls to participate in sports because experts have discovered that the benefits of sports help eliminate or reduce many of the problems typically faced by adolescent girls, “Girls who participate in sports are less likely to use drugs, they’re less likely to drop out of school and they’re less likely to get pregnant” (Coleman 1).

Girls seem to benefit a great deal from sports participation for many reasons. Traditionally girls are not as encouraged to participate in sports as are boys. Further, when girls and boys...

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Athletics & Youth. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 10:12, September 22, 2023, from