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Active club memberships promote health


The psyche also benefits from membership in sports clubs
Although adolescents in particular often have a large number of friends in online networks these days, their real social contacts have become significantly fewer in recent decades. According to a current study, active membership in clubs can offer a balance here. This has a positive effect on the social relationships of young people and their mental health, reports the Medical University of Vienna on the study results.

There are billions of users on social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Whatsapp, and at the same time, “real” social contacts are noticeably decreasing, according to MedUni Vienna. Active membership in clubs can, however, be a good antipole. Researchers from the Austrian Federal Sports Organization (BSO) and the Department of Environmental Hygiene and Environmental Medicine at MedUni Vienna have jointly investigated the advantages of club membership.

Advantages of active membership in the sports club
The research team, headed by Hans-Peter Hutter from MedUni Vienna, evaluated a total of 1,685 previous papers on the topic of “Sports clubs and health”. The most noticeable health-related effects included increased self-confidence (especially among girls), improved well-being and better mental health, according to the MedUni Vienna. Also, "active membership in the sports club helps young people to integrate into society and protects young people from" getting on the wrong track, "says the study director. Active membership in the sports club is fun and brings social support with it, which also leads to more regular sporting activities. Sports club members are generally satisfied with their lives (he).

Positive effects in all age groups
According to the scientists, many of the effects were stronger for active membership in the sports club than for self-organized sports. The central result of the meta study is that, in addition to the positive effects of regular exercise, positive effects on mental health are also caused by active membership in sports clubs. The positive health effects of the social aspects in sports clubs can be determined in all age groups and in both genders.

Social component often underestimated
In general, the social component in medicine is often underestimated and its positive effects on health are rarely discussed, the study authors emphasize. Recent studies have also pointed out that an active social life has positive effects in the prevention of dementia. Social contacts keep vital, because you have to react to your counterpart, explains Hans-Peter Hutter. This would promote cognitive skills. Sport in the club has a general psychosocial benefit, which is also a unique selling point of the club's activity, according to the study director. (fp)

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