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Sports as a Stepping Stone into Life

Sports as a Stepping Stone into Life

From an early age, sports have played a significant role in my life and my upbringing. Whether it was on the playground at recess, on the playing field in junior high and high school or in the local rec league during my adult years, sports have provided me with several benefits that I have been able to apply to other areas of my life. My love for sports and my belief in how sports can benefit a child’s development is what led me to start my business and invest in the lives of children throughout the Jackson Metro area.   

So, how do sports play such a big role in the physical, mental, social and emotional development of children? The benefits of sports that address the mental, social, and emotional aspects of a child’s development include increased self-confidence, the ability to build positive relationships with teammates, learning how to follow rules and respect authority, instilling and strengthening the habit of self-discipline, and overcoming adversity. Studies have shown a direct correlation between regular exercise and improved mental health.

The physical benefits of sports allow children to improve their coordination and balance, promotes a healthy lifestyle thorough exercise and strengthen bones, tendons, joints and ligaments. Studies have shown that adolescents that participate in sports are eight times more likely to participate in sports later in life than those who do not. By participating in sports, the chances of childhood obesity also decrease. According to the Mississippi Dept. of Health, currently nearly 1 in 5 high school students are obese. 

As parents, your role in fostering the love of sports is to remember that sports are meant to be fun. I’ve seen too many children quit a sport or quit sports altogether because of the pressure of a parent. Be your child’s biggest cheerleader, not their harshest critic

It’s also important to encourage your child to try different sports to see what interests them most. Different sports provide different challenges both physically and mentally. The more sports your child can play, especially early in their development, the better the overall physical development of the child.

As the weather begins to get warmer, I encourage each of you to get out and play. Your child will thank you for it.

Derek Rooker

Owner – Soccer Shots of Jackson


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