Why You Should Support Kids Basketball

It seems like kids spend a lot of their time glued to a video console or tweeting on their smartphone. In some ways, this is better than them staring at the television for hours on end – at least they are actively involved, instead of sitting there passively absorbing whatever advertisers want them to believe. However, there has been a decline in kids participating in sports and other physical activity in recent years, and the results are showing up in huge increases in childhood obesity – over 30% of children are overweight or obese in the United States by the time they reach the third grade. This needs to change, and basketball may be part of the solution.

Compared to some other sports – such as football and baseball – the investment needed to set up a basketball program is relatively modest. Players only need a good pair of shoes to get involved, and the cost of constructing Versacourt basketball courts is significantly less than, for example, building and maintaining football fields. This is particularly important when you consider that funding for sports programs has been on the decline in schools throughout America – it is estimated that $1.5 billion was cut from school sports budgets across the nation in the 2010–2011 school year alone.

Basketball is also an excellent form of exercise. While it is not a highly aerobic sport, it does burn off a lot of calories – for example, a child who weighs 100 pounds will use 180 calories in just 30 minutes on the court. It also builds endurance and improves hand eye coordination, as well as having a positive effect on balance and flexibility. A child who plays basketball may not go on to a career in the NBA, but they will learn a love of physical activity that will reduce the likelihood of disease as they get older, and will help them to maintain a high quality of life.

Aside from the physical aspect, basketball also has significant psychological and behavioral benefits for children. To start with, it improves their social skills because of the team environment, and also teaches them the benefit of cooperation as opposed to trying to go it alone. Furthermore, basketball helps kids to improve their confidence, which in turn leads to increased happiness and success. Finally, by playing basketball, kids are able to burn off their boundless energy, which in turn leads to a reduction in behavioral problems such as aggression.

 

Finally, basketball can be an agent for social change. Particularly in low-income neighborhoods, kids are likely to be drawn into violent gangs and other criminal activity due to constant exposure to crime and a lack of parental supervision. Basketball helps at-risk kids by giving them an organized activity that occupies their time, so that they are less likely to get into trouble. In addition, adults who coach young basketball players are able to act as mentors, instilling values that help at-risk kids to escape from the traps that they are in.

Comments are closed.