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How sports affect your mental health

by Axel Jade

It is well known that playing sports and being active are essential to our health. Not just physically, but also our mental health is being positively affected when we play or even watch our favorite team or athlete play their sports. You can learn more about the positive effects of playing and watching sports below.

Playing a sport to boost your mental health

Next to the physical improvements your body makes while being active, there are also some important mental improvements you can experience. These are some of the most important reasons to play a sport:

  • Relieving While exercising, your body releases endorphins. Endorphins are pain en stress relieving chemicals in your brain. Additionally, exercise also reduces levels of the stress hormone along with cortisol and adrenaline. Did you know that about 80% of people visiting a doctor for stress-related illnesses? So picking up a sport might be a great idea to bring that number down.
  • A better mood. While focussing on your sport or activity, you step away from your stress and worries. This helps you calm down and clear your mind.
  • Long-term benefits. Children who don’t have a great upbringing hugely benefit by playing sports. Playing in a team supports a better well-being as an adult.
  • Help fight addiction and depression. Certain studies claim that playing sports can be as effective as an antidepressant. This doesn’t apply to everyone, but playing sports can support the treatment for depression. Also, children who play sports are less likely to smoke cigarettes and use cannabis as adults. Having a hobby you care about will help you stay on the right track.
  • Playing team sports. Working together and the social aspect of playing a team sport is beneficial for almost everybody. Oftentimes, playing in a team is more fun!

Watching sports to boost your mental health

Being a fan of a sport and a team can also improve your mental health. You are committed and supportive of your team, and you will not miss one single game. You can watch sports online to improve your mental health on a weekly basis. This is why it is so beneficial to watch sports:

  • Self-esteem. Your team’s success can impact your self-esteem. When they win, you feel invincible along with them. Hint: pick a team that is likely to win.
  • Stress relieve. Watching a game can get very intense. The adrenaline and dopamine this creates will help your body relieve stress and feel excited.
  • Better mood. During the game, nothing else really matters. You get to just escape reality for a bit and solely focus on the game. This helps clear and calm down your mind.
  • Improve friendships and family relationships. Watching sports together with family and friends will improve the relationships you have with these people. Leaving you feeling happy and loved.