What Is a Team Sport?

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Team sport

A team sport is an athletic endeavor that requires at least two opposing teams to compete against one another. These sports typically necessitate the use of multiple players and cannot be mastered by a single player, such as tennis, golf or shooting sports. This distinguishes them from individual or solo sports such as swimming, running or cycling.

The unique characteristic of a team sport is the simultaneous presence of competition and cooperation. For example, a football or basketball team is a group of 12 athletes who both compete for starting status and playing time while at the same time cooperate to coordinate their actions for performance success. Successful coaches encourage competition between teammates but also expect their players to express concerns, hopes and disappointments as well as celebrate victories and seek feedback from their coaches.

In addition to fostering teamwork, participating in a team sport teaches a variety of critical-thinking skills. These skills include analyzing and observing, problem-solving, strategizing and adapting to changing weather conditions. These are valuable lessons kids can carry into the classroom and other areas of their life.

Team sports also teach children commitment and the importance of training, practice, setting and achieving goals. They learn that success comes only after hard work and effort and that generally there are no shortcuts in life. Lastly, they learn to appreciate their teammates and to put winning in perspective. This prevents them from becoming sore losers when their team loses and helps them become more understanding, forgiving and upbeat in general.