Jan 10

The Life Skills We Get From Playing Sports

Joseph Schooling, Feng Tianwei, and Theresa Goh are only some of Singapore’s best-known athletes. Through sports, they have learned to flourish as individuals and overcome their own challenges. Being involved in sports have more implications than we think. More than a form of exercise, more than a hobby, sports actually help us develop a lot of valuable life skills.


The old saying, “no man is an island,” very much holds true not just in sports but also in life as a whole. The value of a team’s success not being based solely on an individual is taught and realized through sports. It teaches us to understand our similarities and differences with our peers and that being a better gauge for success, rather than counting wins and losses. This translates to our everyday lives because working well with others will always be a factor for success 


Leadership is a skill that can be actualized when playing sports. Even if you don’t become the captain of your team, to some of your peers, you may be someone they look up to.  Leadership is developed through sports because anybody in the team can stand up to be leaders for each other. In the real world, being able to lead a team can be a foundation for success, as you become a role model and source of direction.


Those who are committed to their teams or sports will also learn to be committed to other important tasks they are involved in. In our time, it’s very difficult to stay focused on one task. When we think it’s too hard, we just give up on it. But those involved with sports have already risen above this. Athletes have experienced the importance of committing to, and finishing a task. This is important in life because learn to persevere through challenges and not give up.


Respect for coaches and referees, respect for authorities, respect for your opponent, being respected by a better player, giving respect to hard-working players, all of this is ingrained in an athlete. Additionally, to earn respect, you have to give it as well. It is not something that is taught, it is a mutual thing that is shared. In school, or when you get a job, there will always be someone better, higher ranked, and more experienced than you. And when you show respect to these people, you will earn theirs as well.


Sports cultivate our mental toughness and self-discipline. When the situation gets rough, the athlete is taught to rise above it and use it as a steppingstone to improve. This applies not only in games, but also in real life where almost anything is done with a lot of pressure. You are always faced with stressful situations, but the way you compose yourself and deal with these situations gracefully can bring you a long way.

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