Basketball is one of the most popular team sports in the world. Fun, dizzying, tactical, simple in its practice but at the same time demanding and very spectacular, it is practiced by players from all over the world who also benefit from a whole series of stimuli in the physical and mental fields.
Here we detail some of the advantages that basketball gives us, outstanding sport of the month of October in #12months12 sports.
Improves motor skills
Basketball is called the sport of blasting. The reason for this is that it requires great speed, agility and coordination for its practice. Thanks to this rhythm of execution, it allows us to improve all those motor skills of our body, especially those related to coordination and balance.
The physical trainer of the Delteco GBC, an Endesa League team, explains why these improvements occur: “Basketball helps us at the level of hand-eye and foot coordination, partly because it is a sport where there is a lot of jumping and imbalance. So its continued practice allows us to improve our balance.
Develops quick thinking
“When you practice basketball in a very small space with four other teammates and five opponents, you have to make very quick and, moreover, correct decisions,” says Lander Castro. In this section we are talking about the mental speed that basketball practice provides, which, as the physical trainer points out, “can also be applied to daily life”.
Making quick decisions or being attentive and focused on the game is vital to prevent opponents from scoring baskets and for us to do so.
Stimulates the cardiovascular system
As with any sport, playing basketball is associated with improvements in the cardiovascular field. It is a very complete and intense exercise that combines resistance, intervallic exercises, lateral movement, jumping… It is estimated that you can burn more than 700 calories during a one hour game.
Sport is one of the most effective tools we have to educate and transmit values to young people. Because of its characteristics, basketball helps children to grow up knowing the importance of teamwork, effort and comradeship. We must also mention learning to respect both the rival and the referees and their decisions.
And it’s not just the little ones you have to focus on. At a more adult age, these values are also decisive. The strategies of defense and attack are even more conditioned by teamwork than by the performance of each of the elements that compose it.
Helps strengthen muscles
We’ve already talked about how complete basketball is as a sport. The combination of shooting the basket, catching rebounds, passing and continuous movement in defense and offense allows us to develop the muscles of the upper and lower body.
The physical trainer of the Delteco GBC clarifies that “excessive muscle hypertrophy (growth) will not be achieved, but the muscles involved will be toned and therefore strengthened”.
Castro recalls that by working so hard on the jumps “a certain gain in strength is achieved in that aspect”. Always talking about the amateur field, since in the professional section these benefits are multiplied.
Team play, as the name suggests, involves all players in achieving the same goal. In basketball, given its characteristics, the active participation of all team members is necessary to achieve victory.
For this reason, it helps to improve confidence. Lander Castro stresses that the fact that “the players participate, have a common goal and achieve that goal together are very beneficial factors at a socio-affective level”.
Basketball has an innate benefit to sports: the release of endorphins, the so-called ‘happiness hormone’. Thanks to its practice we can feel more relaxed to face the day to day of our life.
In addition, basketball requires almost maximum concentration, so we have to direct our five senses to this goal. During the match or training the problems we may have ‘disappear’.
If we look for a sport whose practice does not require a great expense, ideal for the youngest and with enormous benefits from the physical and socializing point of view, basketball is a magnificent example.
The results of practising the “blast sport” in the body are numerous and among them we can observe:
During childhood: greater development of height, muscle mass, reflexes and agility.
In adults: good blood circulation, lung capacity and cleanliness of the airways.
In general: the continuous movement of the game allows better synchronization of the heart rate (it includes the physical, mental and behavioral changes that follow an approximate cycle of 24 hours) in the player.
In terms of mental health, it favours the development of agility and logic when analysing tactical aspects, as well as improving the state of alert to prevent any type of physical attack.