Universal Life Church

Basketball tournament photoThere are religious schools all over the nation. These are typically private schools and universities, but they are often included in sports and other extracurricular activities with public schools. There are some private schools you may not even realize are private religious schools. Take Baylor University, for example. The school is private, and a large number of students are Baptist. Still, Baylor is part of the Big 12 Conference, and it participates in sports alongside other public universities. Its teams are quite good, too. They are worthy foes in football, basketball, and other sports. Duke University is another private school. It was founded by Quakers and Methodists, but it still competes in sports as well. In fact, its basketball team is often a top contender for the Men's Basketball National Championship.

Some may feel that religious schools should not participate in sports with public schools. Their reasons why may vary; some feel that public and private schools are different and should be separate from each other, while others think private schools should focus more on academics than they do extracurricular activities such as sports. However, people who feel this way may be forgetting all of the benefits playing sports can have for children and young adults of all ages. When you consider all the benefits, it's really no surprise that private schools have good athletic programs.

Physical Activity

There's no denying it; kids these days are much less active than in generations past. Years ago, kids would spend most of their summer days outside playing in the sprinkler, playing tag, and running around for hours on end until the streetlight came on. These days, many children spend their time inside on their phones, game systems, and social media. This fact is a large contributor to the rising problem of childhood obesity. Combined with the poor diet many children have, children are starting to gain weight at an earlier age. Of course, this can lead to a host of problems. Sports are a great way to get children off the couch and keep them moving. Ever heard of the "Freshman 15"? Many students gain about 15 pounds their first year of college. A great way to combat this epidemic is through getting students involved with sports.

Sports Are Good for the Mind

School and college especially can be a true mental challenge. Even those with a lighter course load may find that they are often overwhelmed with the number of research papers and amount of studying they have to do. Getting some exercise can be a great way to focus your mind and think more clearly. It's also a good mental break for when students feel like they can't study for another minute. Not only is it great for mental clarity, it's fun too. Exercise can help contribute to better study and writing skills, which can benefit the student greatly with grades and success in college.

Teamwork

Children, especially younger children, have a lot to learn about teamwork. What better way to teach them how to work together than to put them on a sports team? It's great to help them learn:

Cooperation How to overcome challenges Understand that you can't always win

All of these are important lifelong lessons that they can develop naturally through playing sports.

As you can see, having sports teams in schools can offer many benefits. It's hard to find a solid reason why religious private schools should not participate in sports alongside public schools. Sports encourage physical activity, can help clear the mind and lead to students excelling in school, and teach many social skills that children will need in life. Without sports, all of these benefits would be lost and students would likely suffer. Keeping sports in schools, whether those schools are private or public, is something that likely benefits just about any student that attends the school.

Category: Religion, school

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