By Cassie Shortsleeve- Mens Health
Your high school football glory days could pay off at the office. In a new study at Washington University in St. Louis, researchers found that playing team sports was a greater predictor of success in a residency program for doctors-in-training than test scores or a good interview.
"Not all of the outstanding students end up being the best doctors," says lead author Richard Chole, M.D., Ph.D., Director of the American Board of Otolaryngology. When researchers noticed that a lot of the doctors-in-training were former athletes, they sent questionnaires to successful residents and indeed found that many good docs shared varsity letters in common.
Dr. Chole says the leadership lessons and social skills you learn from playing team sports can help you become a better worker. "Very good students are usually in the library studying madly to get wonderful scores on tests, but social interaction and maturity are lost on that sometimes," he says.
Sure, your ability to throw a deep spiral or seal a last-minute layup matters little when it comes to prepping sales reports--but that doesn't mean your time on the field won't come in handy at your 9-to-5. Here are three ways your sports experience can help you in the workplace. (Want more clutch career tips in your feed? Follow Men's Health on Twitter!)
When You're Forced to Work in a Group
Different people with different roles must work together in order for an office--no matter the size--to succeed, says Steve Edwards, Ph.D., a sports psychologist at Oklahoma State University. It's the same lesson you learned in your high school huddle: Make the right passes for the point. Or, even more broadly, you can't score unless someone passes to you, Edwards adds.
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By Helen Sprecher- Athletic Business
This summer, for the first time ever, there were more female athletes in the U.S. Olympic delegation than there were male athletes. That caused a ripple of geeky excitement among the sports statistics nerd population. We wondered whether it was a fluke, or whether it was actually a trend we'd see reflected anywhere else.
Well, as it turns out, we didn't have to wait very long, and we didn't have to look very far; in fact, we only had to wait a few weeks, and look to our local high schools. The National Federation of State High School Associations just released its annual Sports Participation Survey, which as it has every year for more than two decades, shows more kids playing sports than the previous year. But there's a twist to the 2011-12 academic year's all-time high of 7,692,520 participants -- the gain is attributable to a significant increase among girls' participation (an additional 33,984) that more than made up for a 9,419-participant drop in the boys' figures.
The number of boys participating in high school sports (4,484,987) still leads the number of girls (3,207,533), but the number of girls has been on the rise for 23 years straight. Seven of the top 10 boys' sports registered drops in participation, with 11-player football, outdoor track and field, basketball, wrestling, tennis, golf, and swimming and diving all down from last year. Only three sports in that top 10 (baseball, soccer and cross country) showed increases. The girls' sports grew across the board. If you want the full survey, it's available as a free download from the NFHS website; in fact, NFHS has interactive participation data if you want to compare sports year by year, state by state, whatever.
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