Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Leaving anger on the field: Statistics show that sports help ease aggression in boys

Date:
July 7, 2011
Source:
American Friends of Tel Aviv University
Summary:
Researchers completed a study of 649 children from low socioeconomic backgrounds that showed that sports training lowers aggression through alleviating negative emotions. The results indicate that children who exhibit higher levels of self-control through sports competition have a corresponding decline in aggressive behavior.

We know that physical education teaches children about fitness and encourages them to live a healthy lifestyle. Now a Tel Aviv University researcher has statistical evidence that sports participation is also beneficial to a child's cognitive, emotional and behavioral well-being.

Keren Shahar, a Ph.D. student at Tel Aviv University's Bob Shapell School of Social Work working under the supervision of Prof. Tammie Ronen and Prof. Michael Rosenbaum, says that over the course of her study, which included 649 children from low socioeconomic backgrounds, a continuous program of various sports helped improve self-control and discipline and lowered feelings of aggression in the children overall.

Her research was recently presented at TAU's Renata Adler Memorial Research Center for Child Welfare and Protection Conference.

A prescription for a healthier body and mind

"We set out to determine whether sports training would have a positive impact on these children by lowering aggression, and how this result can be achieved," explains Shahar. It would be more effective than verbal therapy, she says, because while verbal therapy encourages children to control their behavior, research indicates that it does not reduce negative emotions. The introduction of sport, however, is able to reduce aggressive behavior as a result of quelling negative emotions.

In 25 schools across Israel, Shahar and her fellow researchers analyzed a 24-week-long after-school program based on sports. Half the participants comprised a control group who did not receive sports instruction, and the other half were systematically introduced to a variety of sports for five hours a week. Three times a week, students ranging from grades 3-6 played group sports such as basketball or soccer. Twice a week, they participated in martial arts, including judo and karate.

After 24 weeks of programming, Shahar compared questionnaires and evaluations executed at the beginning of the program with the same tests administered at the end. Her results demonstrated an improvement in traits relating to participants' self-control, such as self-observation, problem-solving skills, and delayed gratification -- which ultimately led to a decrease in the incidence of aggression. Only those children who exhibited higher levels of self-control also demonstrated the decline in aggression.

Boys benefit most

Girls had a much weaker response to sports programming than their male classmates, Shahar's research showed. Statistically, there was little change in the female population. Shahar reasons that girls do not often suffer from the same aggression problems as boys, and are less likely to exhibit a passion for sport.

But the research still applies, Shahar adds. The key is to introduce children to something that they love to do and in which they have a compelling interest. "Find something that motivates them," she counsels. A strong connection with any activity gives children a sense of purpose and decreases the likelihood that they will "act out" their behavioral problems.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Friends of Tel Aviv University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Friends of Tel Aviv University. "Leaving anger on the field: Statistics show that sports help ease aggression in boys." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 July 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110706195908.htm>.
American Friends of Tel Aviv University. (2011, July 7). Leaving anger on the field: Statistics show that sports help ease aggression in boys. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110706195908.htm
American Friends of Tel Aviv University. "Leaving anger on the field: Statistics show that sports help ease aggression in boys." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110706195908.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

AFP (July 30, 2014) Pan-African airline ASKY has suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone amid the worsening Ebola health crisis, which has so far caused 672 deaths in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Duration: 00:43 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

AP (July 30, 2014) At least 20 New Jersey residents have tested positive for chikungunya, a mosquito-borne virus that has spread through the Caribbean. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Xtreme Eating: Your Daily Caloric Intake All On One Plate

Xtreme Eating: Your Daily Caloric Intake All On One Plate

Newsy (July 30, 2014) The Center for Science in the Public Interest released its 2014 list of single meals with whopping calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins