Is Playing Team Sports Good for Mental Health? A New Study Points to Yes
Study after study has determined that exercise and mental health go hand-in-hand. However, exercise from team sports could improve your mental state even more so. According to Mind Body Green, working out in a team setting can protect the brain in a variety of ways.
Here’s what we found out.
Group exercise can actually grow your brain
Exercise has been shown to lower depression, reduce chronic disease, and even increase confidence—but it turns out that exercise can actually grow your brain, too! In one study, researchers scanned the brains of 4,000 children aged 9 to 11. They then asked the kids the level in which they engaged in team sports and the rates of depressive symptoms they experienced regularly.
The results? Kids who were active in team sports had a larger hippocampus, the area of the brain responsible for memory, learning, and handling stress. Additionally, the boys in particular reported lower rates of depression.
Community and exercise are powerful medicine
These findings are not limited to children, and the fact that the brain growth is strongest for participants in structured sports suggests that the combination of exercise and socialization is powerful. That’s likely because of a synergistic effect: exercise releases biochemicals that help you bond with those around you, while being connected with a group releases additional bonding biochemicals to really strengthen your feeling of community. Not only that, but bonding with others can help you live longer.
Kids who were active in team sports had a larger hippocampus, the area of the brain responsible for memory, learning, and handling stress.
By working out with others, you’re likely getting a whole host of additional health benefits. It’s no surprise that adults who participate in team sports reported fewer poor mental health days than those who only participate in solitary exercise.
Don’t let injuries hold you back from team sports
We know the importance of team sports and mental health—but we also know from firsthand experience that team sports aren’t always easy on your body. Our son Chris was an avid athlete who became limited by chronic pain, which impacted both his mental and physical health. After years of trying to find a plantar fasciitis solution, considering surgery, and seeing how much it impacted his happiness, we finally came up with QUICK TAPE®, a superior replacement for traditional foot taping. It turned out that QUICK TAPE not only helped Chris but was also able to provide relief for many other athletes experiencing various types of foot pain.
This simple yet effective solution can help get you or someone your love back into the games you love. Whether you’re an adult wanting to safely play pickleball or you have a child who is experiencing pain on the soccer field, we’re here to help! Contact us today to see if our product is right for you.