Teen Boys Drink, Fight More, Girls Less, When Playing Sports
Jim LiebeltJim is Senior Writer, Editor and Researcher for the HomeWord Center for Youth and Family at Azusa Pacific University. Jim has over 25 years of experience as a youth and family ministry specialist, and has been on the HomeWord staff since 1998. He has served over the years as a pastor, author, youth ministry trainer, adjunct college instructor and speaker. Jim’s culture blog and parenting articles appear on HomeWord.com. Jim is a contributing author of culture and parenting articles to Crosswalk.com. Jim and his wife Jenny live in Olympia, WA.
- 2009 Nov 09
young people are involved in team sports there are certainly many
benefits. Skills are taught and honed, physical fitness is improved,
social skills are exercised, teamwork, leadership and discipline are
learned. And, the list goes on.
There are injury risks involved with playing sports, but that's about as far as I've gone when thinking about any negative aspects of sport involvement.
An interesting new study has revealed that when boys are involved in team sports, they are more likely to engage in at-risk behaviors. The study was gender specific, and girls in fact are less likely to engage in at-risk behaviors when they are involved in sports.
I certainly won't make the leap that because of one study like this, parents should pull their male kids from involvement in sports. But, it is worthwhile to note the findings of the study and give a bit more thought these potential negative outcomes.
team sports increases teenage boys' likelihood to binge drink and
fight, while reducing unhealthy behavior in girls, a new study by the
Injury Prevention Center at University Hospitals' Rainbow Babies &
Children's Hospital in Cleveland found.
Teen girls who played team sports said they fought less, were depressed less often and didn't smoke as much. Male athletes who played team sports also reported some benefits, such as less depression and smoking, the organization said in a news release.
The study surveyed 13,000 U.S. high school students to evaluate links between team sports and risky behavior.
boys playing team sports reported binge-drinking rates 40 percent
higher and fighting 30 percent more often than nonathletes. The athlete
boys also showed 30 percent lower rates of depression and 20 percent
The girls showed no link to drinking in the study, the research reported. The athletic girls showed 10 percent lower rates of fighting, 30 percent less depression, 50 percent less smoking and 10 percent less unhealthy weight loss habits compared with nonathlete girls, the study found.