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Do you know at what age you started playing? Even though we all start playing at a very early age, there isn’t any age restriction until and unless an individual is fit enough to participate.
And what matters is just the participation and all that tremendous benefits of playing will be yours. The three positive aspects of games and sports are: Variety, Physical and mental development and Lessons for life.
Almost every individual has at least one game or sport as their favorites and this is just because of the variety available according to their taste. The games can be sub-divided mainly into three categories indoor, outdoor and digital. Brain skills are involved in the indoor category whereas physical involvement is mandatory for the outdoor games. Sports are the sub-type of outdoor games and usually played with the teams on the specific playground or field. Digital playing requires having electronic gadgets such as mobile phone, video games, computer and soon. The survey was conducted in Turkey among the university students to figure out the preference for the games and gender was found to be the most prominent factor. The percentage of girls who preferred playing outdoors was 58 whereas 32.5% opted to play digital games and the rest of them chose indoor games to play. There were 50.4% and 46.8% of boys who preferred digital and outdoor games respectively and a very small percentage of them that is 2.8% liked to play indoors. (Tatli, 2018, p.100). Participation in indoor games is very less for both the genders. There are other factors like availability of computer and the Internet connection which are also useful in determining the game preference Also, these varieties are interconnected with each other. An individual who is playing a game or sport digitally or online on a regular basis is more likely to develop the interest in that game. The result sounds, even more, better that they start to participate in that game and there is a real-life involvement on the field or playground by him/her. Hence it can be stated that video game play promotes real-life sports participation. One of the main factors for this association between these varieties is self-esteem. (Adachi & Willoughby, 2016). Thus, there are lot many elements which decide the preference for the variety of game or sport.
Playing not only consists of the huge variety but also there are tremendous positive outcomes which assist in physical as well as mental development. Participation in the outdoor games or sports mainly helps in physical body growth. The body muscles are stretched during the play because of which muscles grow and become stronger. Also playing increases the blood circulation through the body. Furthermore, excretion of energy while playing leads to sweating and is very good for the body. Sweating detoxifies the body and removes the unwanted substances such as salts, cholesterol, and alcohol (Borreli, 2014). The possibilities of suffering from common diseases are very less for those individuals engaged in outdoor activities as compared to those who do not take part in it. On the other hand, mental skills are also fostered while playing. Players start accepting the challenges and extend their limits of the brain and gain confidence which establishes self-respect for themselves. Some indoor games such as Chess, Ludo, Puzzle games, etc. increases the thinking and imagination power. The concentration power is also amplified for those participating in games on the regular basis. In other words, playing improves our memory. Hence, it is generally seen that the children who start participating in games at the younger age perform significantly well in the academic studies as well. Moreover, sports also affect the mood. According to Watson (2016), the brain undergoes some chemical change when it is completely involved in a particular outdoor activity consequently relaxing our mind and making us happy. A similar mechanism exists for avoiding stress and depression and that is done by reducing stress hormone while increasing natural mood lifters called endorphins at the same time (para. 2 & 3). In this way, sporting or playing makes our mind healthy and stable. Participation in games, therefore, plays a vital role in physical as well as mental development.
Besides variety and physical and mental development, playing also teaches some lessons for life. While playing any game or sport it is possible that you do not win or even not able to play because you just started playing. But that’s not the end, the thing you require to do is just go on practicing and one day you will obviously win the game. Similar is the case in life. Everyone at least once in a life faces a situation where they feel that they cannot do a thing or consider themselves as a loser because of the failure. But you are not the loser, you are there to have success in your life. There is a wonderful quote from Rampone (n.d.) that is stated as, “Making a mistake is a part of the game. It will happen, so how you handle those mistakes is what counts and what will determine your success. Learn from them and move forward”. Thus, it is important to have a positive attitude which makes you fight against yourself and come out with the better version of yourself. Further, playing also demands to set short term and long term attainable goals in life and stay motivated, work hard and determined to achieve them. Playing in the teams make us learn appropriate communication required to deal while working together with people even if they are oppositional sometimes. It also enhances our ability to handle and control the emotions. For example, experiencing sorrow, anger, excitement etc. and using them to bring up the best within yourself (Lesyk, 1998). Most importantly we learn how to behave ourselves, follow the rules and regulations and respect each other. Thus, we learn qualities such as discipline, teamwork, leadership and so on which helps to create a good personality and improves the way we communicate socially.
In conclusion, sports and games have colossal variety, numerous physical and mental benefits and also some meaningful lessons to learn in life. Playing always have something to give you and just needs your participation. There are plentiful reasons available for anyone from the variety to the benefits of playing games and sports to choose from and go ahead for the participation. While playing we learn a lot simultaneously having joy and happiness in our life.
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