With the power to bring people from different walks of life together, there’s no denying that spors can be a huge force for good.
Sport England estimates that more than 1 in 7 adults in the nation participates in some kind of activity each week, with many more living out their sporting fandom through supporting clubs up and down the country.
Whether you get your kit on to play or you’re wearing your hero’s shirt on the terraces, there are all kinds of benefits to having some kind of sport in your life.
Playing sports keeps you fit
The most obvious link, playing sports is a great way to keep up your physical fitness. The NHS recommends doing 150 minutes of moderate activity each week. This could be a brisk walk, riding a bike or even mowing the lawn!
Sports such as football, rugby and gymnastics are classed as “vigorous” exercise and can help you reach your weekly goals in a little over an hour!
Of course, it doesn’t have to be vigorous. Options such as walking football and golf are great for people who are not quite as sprightly for whatever reason.
Sense of community
Both playing and watching sport puts you in contact with like-minded folks. Whether it’s a shared passion for a particular sport or a specific team, you can make friends for life by getting out and about and following the sport you love.
That sense of community now extends to online spaces as well, opening up your options further. Fan message boards and social media are great ways to join conversations that you hold a passion for.
Adds routine to our lives
Healthy routines are great for preserving and improving our mental health, and sports participation and fandom can both help with this.
If you’re on a sports team, you may have regular practices and games to get to at set times, while supporting a club also gives you a place to be at a certain time, where you’ll be doing something you enjoy and reaping the vast mental benefits that it brings!
Can aid children’s development
Sports are great ways for kids to socialise, learn technical skills and develop key personality traits such as discipline, resilience and confidence.
A youngster that might struggle in the education system can become a sporting star – while contextualising academic subjects in a sporting sense can also bring two-way benefits.
Dennis Relojo-Howell is the founder of Psychreg.