Sports are a great way for children to develop life skills. There are a wide variety of benefits and lessons to be learned from playing sports in your childhood, both on and off the field. Check out these five ways that sports can develop life skills:

1. Teamwork

The ability to work within a team is a skill that will serve you well for your entire life. Whether at work or with your family, being a part of a team will develop your ability to coexist with other people, and do so in a positive and productive fashion. Teamwork extends to a variety of different soft skills, from communication to goal-setting, and will help children learn how to be effective members of a larger community. They will look beyond their own self-interest and find ways to contribute to the group.

2. Adversity

Life is far from rosy much of the time, and you are bound to be confronted with many roadblocks and setbacks that are out of your own control. What matters is not what difficulties you encounter in life, but how you react to them. Sports are full of adversity and are the perfect learning ground for how to battle and overcome difficulty in your life. They give a child a thicker skin, and teach them that while things will occur that are unpleasant and difficult, they are temporary, and they have the power to change their circumstances.

3. Dealing with Authority

A large part of life both professionally and academically is about learning how to handle and interact with authoritative figures. Whether it’s a boss you don’t like or a teacher, you are bound to encounter someone in a position of authority who you simply don’t get along with. Sports teaches children that while they may not always agree with those positions of authority such as coaches or referees, they have to respect that persons’ authority. Throwing fits or displaying emotional outbursts will not accomplish anything in the sports arena, and it certainly won’t fly as they progress in school and the professional world.

4. Concentration

Sports demand the full focus of a child, as they concentrate on the task directly in front of them. This is an important skill that carries over to school and the workplace as well. Being able to fully focus on the task at hand, as well as have a short memory and leave behind momentary failures of the past are important traits in all phases of life. Sports will mentally sharpen and toughen kids, so that they are ready to hone in on what it is that needs to get done.

5. Confidence

Success in sports is one of the most exhilarating feelings that you can experience. Whether it’s netting a goal, scoring a touchdown, or getting a line-drive base hit, success builds confidence, and gives kids the hunger to gain more of it. Winning is great for confidence, and once kids have tasted that success, they will be eager to find more of it in all facets of their lives.