Benefits of learning a new sport

Challenge yourself!

The NHS advises doing around 150 minutes of moderate intensity activity a week, yet less than 5% of adults actually manage to notch up this recommendation. One of the main reasons is the myth that exercise is boring and repetitive!

There’s no doubt that doing the same thing for a long period of time can be boring, but there are plenty of ways on how to introduce fun into exercise to motivate your fitness journey – learning a new sport being one. 

We all know there are significant benefits to playing sports right from infants to older adults – social, physical and mental. But how can you benefit from learning new sports in particular?

Social Benefits

When trying something new, you’re thrown into new situation with new people. By signing up to learn a new sport you have interest in – you’ll meet like-minded people with similar interests which can lead to new friendships. If you are interested in team-based sports, such as football, rugby or netball – then this benefit is enhanced due to the sense of belonging. How well your team does largely counts on how successful you are as a team because sport relies a lot on trust, a necessary trait for friendships. Although this is a social benefit for all ages, it’s significantly more so for children as learning a new sport will develop their social skills, such as communication and discipline.

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Emotional Benefits

Physical activity alone has been shown to stimulate chemicals in the brain that make you feel better. Research also shows a link between playing sport and self-esteem. The support of a team, a word from the coach and achieving personal bests or individual/team awards can do a world of good for our confidence. Stepping out of your comfort zone can also be extremely rewarding when playing sports. It’s nice to feel comfortable but pushing your boundaries will help to break down your mental barriers and empower yourself to be the best you can be!

Physical Benefits

Learning a new sport can help you reach your fitness goals and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Sport and exercise can help prevent excess weight gain as when you engage in physical activity, you burn calories. The more intense the activity, the more calories you burn. Exercise can also reduce the risk of major illnesses, such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and cancer by up to 50% and ultimately lower your risk of early death by up to 30%! 

With so many social, physical and emotional benefits, learning a new sport is a no brainer! Instead of going solo while exercising, the key is to have enough fun that you’ll forget you’re even working out.

If you enjoyed this blog you may enjoy our Immune system boosting foods blog too! After all, two main components for a healthy lifestyle are exercise and a healthy, balanced diet.

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