Home > Exercise with Purpose > Individual Sports versus Team Sports

Individual Sports versus Team Sports

By: Joanne Walker BA (hons) - Updated: 10 May 2017 | comments*Discuss
Sports Team Sports Team Individual

Organised sport can be broadly classed into two categories – individual sport versus team sport. Both types of sport have their advantages and disadvantages and there are plenty of reasons for taking up a sport in either class. However, most people find that from an early age, they tend to be drawn towards one or the other. That is not to say that someone who enjoys playing football cannot enjoy running, but it does means that most people have skills which translate more towards working alone or in a team.

Advantages Of Individual Sport

The advantages of playing an individual sport are, as you would expect, numerous and manifold. Individual sports can often be more appealing to people who are new to sport thanks to the ease with which you can start to take part in them. As this is one of the biggest advantages of individual sport – that you can just go out and do it whenever you want, without having to wait for others. If you are a runner and want to go running, you can just pull on your trainers and get going.

Likewise, if you are a swimmer, you can head to the pool. You do not have to wait for a training session or worry about getting a team together to play with.

The other big advantage of individual sport which draws people in is that in competition, there is no one to blame but yourself. This particular aspect appeals to people who work better alone because they know that success is entirely dependent on themselves and there are no teammates to hold responsible if things do not go according to plan.

Advantages Of Team Sport

The advantages of team sport are, as would be expected, in many ways, the opposites of those for individual sport. One of the biggest draws of team sports is that the responsibility for success is equally shared out between all members of the team. That way, if one player is having an off day then failure is not inevitable – although all team members are, of course, expected to do their best at all times.

Another advantage is the community aspect of team sport. This means that you have people to train with and measure yourself against. This can help you to push yourself further as you have a measure of what other people are achieving. This community aspect helps to spur people on, as within a team there is always a sense of camaraderie and teammates tend to encourage one another to achieve their absolute best.

The physical skills, such as being fast or strong, of sport can cross over between sports, such as the example above with running and football. But it is those social skills such as teamwork and leadership which can determine whether you are a team sport or an individual sport kind of person.

This will not prevent you from taking part in the other type, but as well as being better at one or the other, you will also find you enjoy one type more than the other, and as it is enjoyment which determines how much time we spend on something, this often tends to be the deciding factor in whether we take on a team sport or an individual sport as our primary pastime.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
[Add a Comment]
im in color guard and you have to warm up your muscles before doing this activity or you will have shin splints, muscle pains, or exhaustion. its good if you want to become healthier and more physical.,
emilee - 5-Mar-15 @ 3:01 PM
I prefer color guard because I love twisting and turning to spin the flag. Most of the time I do it individually so that I can remember my steps but add my own thing to them. By adding my own thing I mean like yes I still do the same steps I was taught with my hands but I use my other body areas to add more spice to it. Its like my own dance I created to help me remember. For example in color guard, we had to practice, heel, ball, toe. Doing that it helps us walk like we were supposed to so why not at home while doing heel, ball, toe some more why not practice twirling the flag.
Chantis (Colorguard) - 27-Feb-15 @ 6:09 PM
I'm currently mentoring my grandson in sports. He has been playing tennis, badminton, soccer(football) and basketball competitively and is now 12 yrs. of age. He started playing these when he was five. Cameron is able to separate the different strokes mentally when transitioning from one racket sport to the other on the same day. Similarly he keenly understands both team sports and the skills and camaraderie essential for both as well. He has dabbled in table tennis, pickleball(dumbed down tennis), caroms and a couple of other obscure sports where he excels as well. Here In the US, most parents/schools tend to gravitate to the team sports because of higher numbers for sign ups and general popularity. The problem is the parents become stereotypical in their mode of thinking. I like to deviate from the norm and have him try individual sports first to build up his strength in self belief, confidence and fortitude to fend for himself. His confidence level is soaring w/o being cocky/overconfident and is comfortable being resourceful. He is able to bring these strengths to the teams he represents. In other words I like to put some variety on his sports plate and have him try meat, potatoes and an abundance of fiber from veggies, fruit and nuts. Likewise on his diet. Seems to working like a charm! The one thing I despise is some parents who forget to keep an ounce of the fun factor at all times and have a detrimental effect on their otherwise promising kid who ends up hating it or at least not liking it because of the additional unnecessary pressure imposed by these over anxious yet misguided adults. Let the coach do the mentoring in sports. It's their job!
Shuttler - 16-Jun-14 @ 1:37 AM
I absolutely love swimming.It has so many possibilities to it.You can swim laps, do water aerobics, or even use it for recreational purposes.The pull of the water makes it much more effective as you work on your muscles and I love it.
Sarah-Emily Carter; - 26-Jun-13 @ 4:33 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
Enter word: