Sports on campus can be a big part of the college experience. Going to games, wearing the school colors, rooting for the home team — all serve to unite the college community and provide a chance to enjoy some recreation when classes let out. But what does playing sports in college do for the athletes themselves?

Plenty, say experts. Consider these 5 benefits:

  1. Support from coaching staff and fellow team members adds to the support from professors. Coaches are “there” for their team members on many levels, from helping them through emotional slumps to encouraging their academic aspirations. The synergy between the locker room and the classroom is particularly effective on a small campus where the athletic and academic programs are mutually supportive.
  2. Easier socialization. Some studies have shown that the transition from high school to college is easier for student-athletes. Being a part of a “team” as soon as you arrive on campus can jump-start the adjustment process.
  3. Better fitness. Participating in athletics affords not only the benefits of regular physical activity, but a motivation to learn about and practice good nutritional habits as well. You typically don’t find student-athletes surviving on pizza and ramen noodles.
  4. Academic motivation. We often think of athletics and academics as two totally separate things. But in most colleges, students who play sports are required to keep up their grades. For some students, being required to stay on top of their studies so that they can stay on the team makes the difference between success and failure, not only in college but later in life, as well.
  5. Professional opportunities. Very few college athletes go on to play professional sports. But the social networks they develop through athletics, and the team-building skills they learn on the playing field can give young athletes a head-start in the business world. Having been a team leader or a good team player in college not only prepares a student for the business world, it says volumes to potential employers about a student’s readiness for the professional community.


For more information on becoming an NCAA college bound athlete see our page on NCAA STUDENT INFORMATION