World Cup

Health benefits of playing soccer

Health benefits of playing soccer

POSTED: Wednesday, June 18, 2014 - 10:42am

UPDATED: Wednesday, June 18, 2014 - 10:45am

Soccer has taken the United States by storm and if you are a fan, there is no more exciting time than now because the World Cup is underway.

Soccer fans around the country are pumped by the U.S. win over Ghana this week on soccer's biggest stage: The World Cup.

The sport is gaining popularity in America which is good for the health of all who play, whether children or adults.

Soccer is obviously good exercise because of the running and sprinting. All of the aerobic conditioning helps strengthen the heart and may help control high blood pressure.

Those who play regularly burn lots of calories, which can help keep the weight down and decrease the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

All of the running and ball handling is great for building muscle and strengthening bones.  For adults, who often lose bone density as they age, this weight-bearing workout can help keep the skeleton strong.

Playing soccer also helps promote teamwork. Children who are learning to play may develop better social skills as they interact with their peers.  Being part of a team can also build self-confidence. Whether you win or lose, the comradery shared makes for good, healthy fun.

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