Study: Children Participate in Team Sports Fewer Psychological Problems | Children | Teens | Physical Activity | Team Sports | Mental Health | Anxiety | Depression

[Voice of Hope, June 28, 2022](Editor: Guo Qiang)Parents often let their children participate in physical activities, both to develop skills and to keep children active, but the type of sports can also affect children’s mental health. According to “Medical Xpress”, a new study in the United States found that children who play team sports such as football and baseball have fewer mental health problems, but children who play individual sports such as tennis and gymnastics have even more mental health problems than children who do not participate in physical activity. .

Baseball (Piqsels)

“Freedom Times” reported that the sports mentioned in the study does not refer to “sports” only in terms of the amount of activity, but “organized sports activities” such as school clubs and school teams. Past research has consistently shown that youth participation in organized physical activity can help prevent psychological problems, and this study establishes which sports are more beneficial.

The study analyzed data on exercise habits and mental health of 11,235 children aged 9-13. The parent or guardian of the child fills out a form to analyze the child’s mental health. After taking into account family income, physical health, and other conditions that may affect mental health, it is found that participating in team sports is less likely to cause anxiety, depression, social or attention problems and other psychological problems situation. The research has been published in the American journal Plos One.

The study divided the children into four groups, ranked from lowest to highest risk of mental health problems: children who participated in team sports only, children who participated in both team and individual sports, children who did not participate in any physical activity, and those who only participated in individual sports. Physical activity for kids.

Physical Activity, Sports (Piqsels)
Physical Activity, Sports (Piqsels)

The research team said they had expected that children who participated in individual sports programs should also have lower mental health risks than children who did not participate in physical activity, but the results showed that this was not the case. Children who only participate in individual physical activity are at greater risk for their mental health than children who do not participate in physical activity.

The researchers speculate that the link between individual sports and mental health may be due to the fact that children with individual sports are more stressed and have no teammates to share the blame for their poor performance. Children who are alone in the stadium need to receive more attention from the audience, and may worry about their physical appearance being watched by others. This may also be the reason why people who participate in ballet and other physical activities in the study have higher levels of anxiety and depression. .

The research team pointed out that the study failed to clarify the causal relationship between team sports and mental health, only to judge its correlation. Further research is needed to clarify the relationship between individual physical activity and mental health.

Research still has limitations, including that children’s assessment of psychological problems is reported by parents and may be overestimated or underestimated, e.g. seeing children participating in team sports and interacting well with teammates, thus underestimating children’s psychological problems And women reported less psychological problems than men, which may also be related to the insensitivity of parents to female children’s mental health problems.

Responsible editor: Li Zhi

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