A study published in Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine reported that out of 14,000 high school atheletes, the ones who regularly played sports were less likely to use drugs. Likewise, a survey performed by the National Household Survey of Drug Abuse showed that students who played sports were less likely to have smoked cigarettes or used drugs and were more likely to disapprove of others using them. Also, the Women's Sports Foundation has stated that female high school athletes are 80% less likely to become pregnant than non-athletes.
Studies perfomed among students in multiple states - including Wyoming, Iowa, and Colorado - have shown that playing sports can actually increase success in the classroom. Various data demonstrate that athletes have higher grade point averages, higher standardized test scores, better attendance, lower dropout rates, and a better chance of going to college.
A survey of individuals at the level of executive Vice President of 75 Fortune 500 companies showed that 95% of them played sports in high school. While it might be hard to argue that sports participation could guarantee higher incomes, promotions, and better jobs, the leadership skills and development of teamwork, hard work, and determination might help prepare students to be leaders at work and in their communities later in life.
Playing sport has many benefits – I believe you can classify them in four categories:
Sport is fun. There are few better ways to enjoy yourself than playing sport – whether competitively or socially. It provides a welcome respite from work (or homework) and can create a shared excitement that can’t be generated by sitting in front of a computer screen.
Sport helps participants to develop important life skills. It teaches and reinforces discipline and hard work through training and setting and accomplishing goals.
Health and wellbeing
It is no secret that people who participate in sport will live a healthier lifestyle.
Social and community
There is nothing quite sport to bring a community together.
First, by practicing a sport, you'll burn anywhere from 300–500 calories a day. You'll also strengthen your cardiovascular system and improve your muscle tone. Translation? You can wear that cool mini-dress and look great. (You'll feel great, too.)
Second, in our competitive society there are winners, losers, lucky shots, and bad calls. Sports help you prepare for it. Playing on a team teaches you how to work in a group, and prepares you to deal with the ups and downs of life. Scoring a goal or winning a race is a confidence-booster—so is showing up and playing well on a day you feel crappy.
Third, deep personal bonds develop by sharing exciting victories and dealing with losses with your teammates. You'll really get to know some great girls in your grade and in upper classes who can help you—on and off the field.