A recent study polled students, coaches and parents to determine the benefits students gain by participating in school sport. The study was completed by Rob Williamson, a Masters of Arts in Human Kinetics student at the University of Ottawa, and among other things it showed that school sport is an important contributor to Ontario’s education system. The study also concluded that student-athletes scored higher in specific developmental areas than those students who do not participate in athletics.
Detailed below are some of the findings of the study:
- Student-athletes scored higher on 40 of 41 developmental assets compared to students who do not participate in school sport. On 21 of the 40, the difference was statistically significant, meaning there were true differences between the two.
- Parents who participated in high school sport themselves believe the experience helped them develop important life skills.
- Coaches feel student-athletes are developing skills such as leadership, communication, goal setting, perseverance, teamwork, responsibility, and respect.
- Student-athletes appear to be more engaged and enjoy school more as a result of participating in high school sport.
- Sport is not the most important aspect of a student-athlete’s life, meaning that high school sport seems to be developing a balanced individual.
- For coaches, the dual role of teacher and coach increases job satisfaction and contributes to building positive relationships with students.