Can sport become an addiction?

  • By Kate
  • May 19, 2021
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  • 117 Views

The first association with sport for the majority of people is health, energy, movement and undeniably a boost of positive energy. Unless one is a professional sportsman, sports is done for health. At least, we believe it is the purposed of sport. Yet, at some point, things become rather messy. While some people really struggle with making themselves go in for any type of sports, other become really wired and even, somewhat addicted to sport. If you wish to learn about some of the psychological issues related to excessive sport, you will find this article interesting.

Sport for losing weight

Undeniably, one of the most popular purposes of sport for people is losing weight. It is a well-known fact that losing weight is a way more effective and long-lasting if you combine a diet with sport. In the case of people with real obesity, sport is needed even more for weight loss as its helps to repair the stretched skin and get not only a healthy weight but also a healthy body.

Still, as you can imagine, everything can really get wrong when a person gives too much importance to so-called burning of calories and, instead of treating the exercises as something done for health, thus, having a positive approach to it, starts seeing it as a punishment for having unhealthy food.

Such an attitude can create an unhealthy pattern in one’s brain with which a person will not be able to enjoy either having favourite food or exercising. This can worsen if a person still has a trouble with resigning from the food one believes to be unhealthy and then he or she has to punish oneself more and more.

Smart devices

Of course, many modern people feel a need for doing sport even if they do not have any problems with obesity. This is a really great thing since the lifestyle of the majority of people in the developed countries is sedentary. According to some estimations, an average person in the USA spends only three hours standing during an entire day. Of course, standing does not necessarily mean moving. That is why an urge of many people to get involved into sport activities is certainly very good.

The manufacturers of electronic devices have developed smart watches for active people which help them to keep a track of various body parameters as well as to analyse the workouts. Certainly, this helps to keep a track of one’s health and also makes you motivated to move. Yet, many specialists of behavioural addictions have already noticed how harmful these devices can be. According to them, the innocent tracking of one’s steps during jogging can get one hooked so that with each jogging session a person will strive to beat one’s own records. Up to a certain extent, this can be a great mean of motivation, however, whenever a person starts feeling a compulsive urge to jog more and more, get frustrated since there was no opportunity to jog enough or at all on a particular day or even feel growing anxiety, these are already indications of an addiction.

Of course, you might wonder what is so bad in it. After all, it is neither a substance abuse nor compulsive eating or gambling. Definitely, being thus into sports is a way healthier than many other addictive behaviours, however, anything which causes addiction has a potential of interfering with your life up to the extent which it will really cause your problems. For instance, doing sports when you are ill, participating in outside sports activities when the weather is bad or giving sports the greatest significance which overcomes your family and carrier are some of the possible outcomes of being addicted to sport.

Undeniably, for professional sportsmen some of these things might be a necessity, however, for people who are enjoying doing sport for the sake of their health, such a behaviour does not have anything in common with real health.

What can you do to avoid or battle a sport addiction?

At some point, getting rid of behavioural addictions might get rather complicated especially when they might be linked to other aspects of your life and also have an impact on your physical health. Doling sport regularly makes your body addicted to movement on a physical level, that is why decreasing the time of a workout might make you feel weird or even uncomfortable on a physical level. At the same time, many people fall for excessive exercising because of some internal needs of perfectionism. After all, building up your muscles and shaping your body has a hidden motive of gaining an ideal version of oneself which simply cannot be achieved.

Of course, it is crucial to gain a healthy attitude to sport. Sport is necessary in our daily life and it is certainly healthy, but even our ancestors who led a very active lifestyle never packed their muscles up to a grotesque shape. Their bodies were shaped by natural activities and they helped them in achieving their goals rather than took their entire time making them focused exclusively on maintaining all the muscle mass.