When kids are young, parents usually sign them up for multiple sports throughout the year. As these young athletes develop and grow, they tend to narrow down which sports they want to participate in, mainly choosing the ones they like best. Kids are able to grow athletically from this.
On the flip side, there are also parents out there that believe in children specializing in one sport only, practicing to perfect their craft in that sport. As this doesn’t sound like a terrible idea, this can lead to a number of potential issues.
As kids grow, playing multiple sports promotes a healthy and active lifestyle. Let’s take a look at other multisport athlete benefits.
Maintain Interest in Sports
When athletes specialize in one sport their whole life, they can get bored fairly easily. Being in the same routine each day can get old pretty quickly. Playing multiple sports, however, allows athletes to get out of that routine, and boost excitement.
Provides Time To Decide Which Sport You Really Love
When you’re a kid, it’s hard to pick one thing. It’s hard to pick a favorite color, food, or sport. As these kids grow as athletes and as individuals, playing multiple sports will help them decide what they want to do, and which road they want to go down.
Become a dynamic Team Player
Playing multiple sports means you’re playing on different teams which means you’re playing with different teammates. This can be beneficial to whichever sports you play. This also teaches kids how to handle different situations of adversity, which will benefit them in whatever sport they play.
When kids and athletes participate in multiple sports, they are going to have different roles on each team. This helps develop different types of skills that can be applied from one sport to another, as well as enhance eye-hand coordination, balance, endurance, explosion, communication and agility.
Fewer overuse injuries
As athletes grow, their bodies can become overstressed and can lead to overuse injuries. This is especially true when kids only play one sport. Using the same muscles over and over for many reps over the years is going to put wear and tear on your body muscles, and increase athletes risk of injury.
College coaches also tend to look at multi sport athletes during their recruiting process. Coaches like Urban Meyer and Dabo Swinney especially enjoy recruiting guys that played multiple sports in high school. Dabo Swinney said, “I just think that the cross-training, the different types of coaching, the different types of locker rooms, the different environments that you practice in, the different challenges -- I think it develops a much more competitive, well-rounded type person.” Dabo Swinney has won multiple College Football National Championships, as well as has three sons whom are all multi-sport athletes.
As you can see, there are many multisport athlete benefits. Multi-sport athletes tend to have improved health and wellness, decreased injury rate, improved athleticism, and improved leadership and teamwork. Being a versatile athlete goes a long ways, on and off the field.