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Richard Monette: Multi Sport Participation A Great Way to Stay Active For Life

The mandate of the Canadian not-for-profit organization Active For Life is to help to foster the development of physical literacy among children so that physcial actvity will become part and parcel of their lives going forward.

To that end, Richard Monette, the lead of Afl, sees inherent value in pursuing a multi-sports lifestyle.

"When you take on the multi-sport lifestyle, it brings on fulfillment and achievement," Monette explained. "Let's talk about the achievement part. As a sports psychology coach, I've been dealing with elite athletes for close to 35 years."

What Monette has seen over that time frame is that elite-level performers who competed in multiple sports were the more complete athletes.

"It's not just a physical component but a mental component. I find that multi-sport athletes are mentally tougher, they're more flexible. They're resilient and they adapt to different situations."

Monette also points to the scientific evidence that shows athletes, both recreational and elite, who participate in multiple sports are less suscepitble to injury and less likely to suffer from burnout.

As far as the fulfillment element is concerned, Monette points to an oft-repeated adage - variety is the spice of life.

"I find that athletes that are involved in more than one sport are happier, more easy going," Monette said. "I deal with pro athletes, for example, and those who do other sports, and not just sports but other activities, they just have a better outlook, a better perspective on their sport and their career.

"Everyone in Canada and the world should try to have a multi-activity lifestyle."

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