Growing up in a household of six children my parents were always driving one or more of us to a field to play different sports. At one time or another we all played a sport, some of us more athletic than others.
Now as my hubby and I raise our children we too are starting to drive them around to different sports field and gyms. There are many things that have changed since we played recreational sports, and yet there are some things that have stayed the same.
These are core things, the important things, the benefits to being on a sports team.
It’s what drove me to softball practice in the cold even though I was uncoordinated and barely played. It is what drives our kids to run and train in the cold, the rain, and through injuries.
As we watched our son play in his basketball game this past week I thought about the benefits to being a part of a team.
Here are just 5 benefits to being on a sports team:
You are a part of something bigger than yourself. You play an important role in being a part of a whole! As a team, you can celebrate the high and excitement of a win! I remember growing up that over the top happiness that bubbled over when a team I played for went all the way to win a championship! You can also come together in supporting one another on the down and sinking feeling that overcomes you at losing.
It builds character. Being on a team teaches you to encourage and build one another up. If you tear a team mate down it only hinders the team’s performance. Being on a team teaches you that life isn’t always fair and sometimes refs make a bad call and coaches don’t always do the right thing. How you rise above those moments says a lot about your character.
Teaches Commitment. There were so many times growing up that I wanted to quit. Just forget about it and walk away. Especially when things weren’t going my way. I sometimes see glimpses of these very same feelings in my kids. My parents encouraged me to stick with it, I signed up and they paid. I made a commitment to the team and I needed to follow through. They encouraged me and now I encourage my kids with the same words. Man, is it ever hard to do when all you want is to throw in the towel. Teaching commitment to something now will leave a lasting impression later when they are asked to commit to bigger things.
You learn that winning isn’t everything. I have to smile at this one. SO many times growing up the car rides home from the sports field were filled with less than nice things to say. At least, we waited until we got to the car! Squeezed in there my parents always brought up the good things that happened in the game and how we can work on that, or practice that just a bit more. Our car rides home are a lot more mild so far and are filled with bringing out the best that happened during the game. Who was the wise person who said that winning isn’t everything. Hard to hear after a loss, but oh so true.
There’s no “I” in team. Ball hogger, race ahead of everyone, pushes ahead, scores all the goals, never passes. Yep, we can all think of someone on the field or court like that. The corny saying is really true! There is no “I” in team. A team is defined as the work done by people who work together as a team to do something. I love the dictionary because I couldn’t have said it better myself. People working together to accomplish a goal! It brings it full circle back to the first one of the feeling of being a part of something bigger than yourself.
Being apart of team isn’t always easy, but the good outweighs the bad ten to one! Be encouraged and encourage others to know that you can accomplish great things, build great character, experience things bigger than you, and have teammates that have your back through thick and thin! It makes being part of a team worth every moment!