Advocacy

Benefits of Youth Activities

It’s no surprise that participation in youth activities like baseball and basketball improve kids’ physical well-being, but the benefits stretch far greater than that. These are just a few examples of how it can impact a child:

Betters academic performance

Kids who participate in physical activity receive up to 40% higher test scores. They are also 15 percent more likely to go to college according to Project Play research.

Children who are involved in sports while in high school are more likely to experience academic success and graduate.

More info

Builds Character

With the help of an understanding coach and support system, kids learn social skills like teamwork, cooperation, and leadership.

  • They discover how to handle winning and (perhaps more importantly) losing, while being a good sport.
  • Kids learn the value of being dedicated to something. By taking part in a group activity, they learn that others are counting on them and that their participation and commitment is vital to the success of their team.
  • They develop discipline and independence, learning how to take care of themselves by bringing all of their necessary gear to practice and meets, following their training schedule, arriving on time, and completing their “shared” requirements.
  • Starting with the earliest activities, kids set goals and learn how to achieve them. From reaching the end of the field, to making their first basket, to winning a goal, each step along the way teaches them that if they work hard and stay dedicated, they can persevere.
More info

Improves mental and emotional health

Self-esteem  and body image are improved when kids participate in physical activities. They see their body growing stronger, learn to love the way that they are shaped, and grow to accept their challenges as what makes them unique. Endorphins are released when youth are active, improving mood and reducing the risk of depression and anxiety.

More info

Promotes Inclusion

Youth activities can meet the needs of all young people, regardless of age, sex, race/ ethnicity, or ability. It increases socialization and independence and reduces stigma.

More info

Combats childhood obesity

One in three children are overweight or obese; in African American and Hispanic communities, that number increases to 40 percent. Today’s kids have a very different lifestyle than their ancestors, where they are picked up rather that walk home from school, gym class and after-school academic sports have often been cut, and free time is spent watching TV, playing video games, or surfing the web. Participation in youth activities can combat this regimen, by providing a healthy and fun alternative.

They also are at a reduced risk of heart disease, stroke, cancer, and diabetes, by the way.

More info

Enhances career potential

Especially empowering for girls, a background in sports can help accelerate a woman’s leadership and career potential. Kids who are physical active are more productive at work and end up earning 7-8 percent more annually when they grow up than their couch potato counterparts.

More info

Improves health and fitness

Often the most common benefit reported, kids show improved motor skills and hand-eye coordination, preparing them for later in life when they learn to drive, do home improvements, or take on other challenges.

  • Physical activity helps with weight control and battles childhood obesity.
  • Bones and muscles are strengthened, allowing kids to climb a tree (or a mountain!), get across monkey bars, and reduce arthritis, osteoporosis, and injury as adults.
More info

Reduces anti-social behavior

Participation gives young people a purposeful activity after school, on the weekends, and in the summer. These youth are less likely to commit crimes, smoke, use drugs, become pregnant, or participate in risky sexual behavior.

More info

ALIGN YOUR ORGANIZATION WITH AWYF

We’d love for you to join us! As a participating youth activity, you will receive a collection of remarkable benefits, so you can focus on the kids and what you love rather than a mountain of paperwork. It’s a win-win!

soccer

football

baseball