Should Sports Classes Be Dropped In Secondary School So Students Can Concentrate On Academic Subjects? Essay
Exercises and sports are important in the secondary school curriculum because they create a much-needed break for students from the monotony and stress of academic work. Sports also encourage students to remain healthy and avoid sicknesses like obesity. A lot of research has shown that students perform better academically when they are exposed to physical activity, sports, therefore, has a direct influence on the cognitive skills and academic behaviour of students which are important for academic performance, additionally, sports in the student’s curriculum has shown it to enhance attention, concentration, and improved behaviour in the classroom (Trudeau & Shephard 2008).
Basch (2011) claims that exercise directly affects the functioning of the brain by; increasing the flow of oxygen and neurotransmitters to the brain and supporting neurotrophins which are in charge of neurons that are responsible for memory and learning. He asserts that physical activity influences the development and behaviour of the brain by improving attention span, information processing, retrieval and storage, in addition, sports also reduce cravings and enhance positive effects. Sports relieve students from boredom which result in higher attention levels in academics. Research also shows that exercise brings relaxation that results in improved concentration and mood, in addition to enhanced creativity, memory and problem-solving skills.
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Students who participate in sports are less likely to be involved in unhealthy behaviour because their time is mostly spent on games. Sports involvement teaches students about teamwork, cooperation, and following rules (Basch 2011). Students get to learn of their placing in the teams; whether they are leaders, supporters or team players and they get to learn how their performance affects the team. Practising enhances discipline, patience, hard work and competition, which are attributes that can be translated to academics. Sports are also filled with mentors who shape students in positive ways. Coaches, leaders, and team members help students to learn how to work under authority figures, respect hard work, and good sportsmanship, these are lifelong lessons that will stay even after graduating from school.
Secondary school is the stage where most career athletes get discovered or get to realize their potential. In some instances sports and academics are intertwined, for example, some schools have rules that stipulate the minimum GPA required for a student to participate in a particular sport, this will propel the student to work hard academically in order for him or her to participate in this sport. Some students will also get scholarships into institutions of higher learning through sports, thus, it is important to note that not all students’ careers are academically inclined as some of them will have careers connected to sports (Trudeau & Shephard 2008).
In conclusion, we see that sports should be part and parcel of the secondary school curriculum because it keeps the minds of the students fresh and promotes mental, physical and emotional health. Participation in sports showed improved academic performance among students in addition to better healthy lifestyles. Relationships and friendships are forged because of sports and characteristics like teamwork and cooperation are developed. These attributes go towards creating a conducive atmosphere for learning which result in better academic outcomes. Sports also equip the students with life skills like leadership, hard work, self-discipline and time management which will benefit them throughout their lives.
- Basch, C. E. (2011). Physical activity and the achievement gap among urban minority youth. Journal of School Health, 81(10), 626-634.
- Trudeau, F., & Shephard, R. J. (2008). Physical education, school physical activity, school sports and academic performance. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 5(1), 10.
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