You need to know these 10 hidden benefits of playing sports besides losing weight

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Exercise may not be everyone’s thing but it is important and necessary for a healthy lifestyle. If you are still not convinced, perhaps the following benefits might convince you.

It helps you sleep better
Say goodbye to your nights of insomnia. Playing sports helps to stimulate your body such that you will be able to sleep better at night. This is due to the fact that by making your body more active during the day, you are ‘tiring it out’. This leads to your body being less restless at night, and therefore, improving your sleep quality.

It makes you happier
Yes, chocolates and ice cream make you happy but your heart, not so. Sports causes the body to release chemical endorphins, which work to reduce the perception of pain and help the body relax. These chemicals act as natural mood boosters that increase feelings of happiness and optimism. They also reduce anxiety and stress hormones. So if any of you are stressed out or going through a break up, pick up a ball and go kick it around. Or if you prefer racquets, go ahead and smash some shuttlecocks.

It improves your self-esteem
Doing a sport makes you feel important and you feel like you are doing something positive with your life. Also, you are surrounded by a supportive community of friends which creates an environment that improves your self-esteem because that’s where your skills are celebrated. A higher self-esteem can also result in lower anxiety, fewer interpersonal problems and a positive body image. You are also less likely to pick up bad habits such as binge drinking or gambling.

It improves your concentration
If you have problems focusing on studying your lecture notes, go for a run. When you come back, you will find that your mind is refreshed and more focused. A study conducted on students showed that even hour an hour on a treadmill can improve the ability to solve problems by 10%. This positive link between sports and concentration shows how important playing a sport can be.

It makes you disciplined
Doing a sport requires discipline and this becomes naturally ingrained into you. You become more focused in your career or studies and you take important steps to ensure that you do well in these areas. It was found that people who do sports do perform better in their studies and work life because they discipline themselves to manage their time well.

It teaches you social skills
Many of you may not be so open to talking to new people because you are not sure how to start a conversation. Team sports are a great way for you to learn how to open up and talk to people because communication is key in such sports. This gives you the opportunity to improve your social skills and makes you a more confident person.

It reduces your chance of developing certain illnesses
This is especially so for girls. Playing a sport can reduce the chance of you developing breast cancer and osteoporosis because sports help to strengthen your bones and muscles. So for girls who think exercising is boring, why not pick up a sport with your friend, such as netball or volleyball? You will have fun and you will be improving your health at the same time.

It helps your career
Having played in a team sport shows that you know the value of teamwork and good communication. These are skills that are very important in the workplace so having them sets you apart from the rest. There is a reason why many people at the top have taken part in the sporting activities in their school days. Also, playing a sport shows that you are a disciplined person and that too is important in the working world.

It makes you mentally tough
There are not many opportunities that let you fail and try again. Playing a sport gives you that opportunity. You are sure to lose a couple of games and you might even be the reason for your team losing.

In this event, you will know what failure is like and together with your teammates, you will improve yourself and not make the same mistake again. This makes you stronger as a person and when in life, you are faced with setbacks, you will be able to handle them well.

You can eat without feeling guilty
We all love food and having to watch what we eat is torturous. When you do a sport, you generally can eat more because you lost quite a bit of calories.

Of course, do not go to a buffet after every time you exercise because that will not help you maintain your healthy lifestyle. However, you can eat a hearty meal because you need to replenish energy to your body. So do remember, after you do a sport, eat well but not too much.

Convinced to pick up a sport yet? You can start small, like once a week and then you will slowly fall in love with it. Give it a try!

This article was first published on goodyfeed.com

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