Multiple people partaking in boxing training

November 7, 2023, by brzms6

More than a game: the hidden benefits of sports participation

By Amrina Kaur, Employability Officer

Participation in sports is not just about physical fitness and competition; it’s a valuable training ground for acquiring life skills that extend far beyond the playing field. 

In this blog, we’ll explore the experiences of our alumni and current students who have actively been involved in sports during university, to understand how sports enriched their lives and careers.

Developing Essential Skills

Teamwork and collaboration: For 60% of the current students and alumni we spoke to, teamwork and collaboration were the top two skills developed from their sporting experience. 

Millie Doherty, President of the University of Nottingham Tennis Club (2018-19), and SU Sports Officer (2019-20), shared her experience:

 “I learnt so many transferable skills playing sport and volunteering at university that I’ve used in the workplace. There can be a lot you have to juggle whilst at university and learning how to delegate and share the load was important – I definitely use these in my day-to-day role.” 

Millie’s story underscores how sports teaches individuals to work harmoniously in a team, a skill that proves invaluable in the professional world.

Communication, time management, and leadership: About 40% of the surveyed alumni felt that skills like communication, time management, and leadership were pivotal. 

Sophie Jackson, a Women’s Flag Club Member, BUCS Big Wednesday and Flag in Schools Volunteer stated: 

“Leadership, communication, and organisation have been immensely helpful in my personal development for work. These skills have helped to build my confidence significantly to go for roles that I would have previously felt were out of my depth. I have been able to apply all these skills to negotiate pay rises, new job roles and extended projects to work on that align with my own passions and skills.” 

Sophie’s experience showcases how these skills empower individuals to take charge of their careers and make informed decisions.

Balancing priorities, relationship management, delegation, and more: Our alumni also mentioned a diverse array of skills they developed through sports, including the ability to balance priorities, relationship management, experience and delegation. These skills not only enhance your ability to excel in the workplace but also improve their overall quality of life.

To understand the real-world impact of sports on personal and professional development, we interviewed Andrew Salgo, UoN Sports Inclusive Sports Ambassador. 

“Time management is crucial with helping me prioritise and organise myself at work as well as making sure I am able to make the most of my time outside of work.”

Often at work, I’m faced with unseen or unexpected challenges, and a big part of dealing with that is being comfortable and composed in those situations, which through sport I have learned to do.”

Sports offers more than just physical activity; it’s a training ground for life. The skills developed through sports, as highlighted by our alumni, not only improve your professional capabilities and are invaluable in today’s competitive job market, but also enriches your personal life. 

Beyond the trophies and medals, sports shapes well-rounded individuals ready to take on the world. So, lace up your trainers, grab your equipment, and get involved in sports to unlock your full potential, both personally and professionally. Your future self will thank you! 

How has your sports involvement contributed to your career journey? Enter our prize draw for your chance to win UoN Sports goodies!

Posted in Sports