Poll suggests watching sports helped mental health during COVID
Just in time for March Madness! According to a Seton Hall poll, sports on television helped a lot of people’s mental health during the pandemic.
The Seton Hall Sports Poll found that 39% of the general population – self-described fans and non-fans alike – say that sports on TV has had a positive effect on the mental health of most Americans, while 33% cite sports as being beneficial to their own mental health.
As you might expect, those numbers shoot up when only sports fans are polled: 73% of avid fans believe that sports on TV has aided in bolstering the country's mental health during the pandemic, with 60% saying it has helped their own.
Among sports fans in general, 47% believe it has helped the nation, while more than half – 51% – say it has helped them personally.
Professor Juan Rios of Seton Hall says, "Sports has offered us a much needed outlet from social isolation and has functioned in some ways as a coping mechanism, providing an extension of community through collective spectatorship and camaraderie. Sports on TV has provided us with a feeling of at least some level of normalcy in an otherwise abnormal time."
Daniel Ladik, the poll’s methodologist and Seton Hall marketing professor told NorthJersey.com, “Sports became one of the coping mechanisms. We had to be at home. We had to self-isolate, and it was sure good to have something we enjoyed watching on TV — even if it wasn’t the same experience that we’re used to having.”
So, enjoy watching your favorite sport on TV; it’s good for your mental health!
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Doyle. Any opinions expressed are Bill Doyle's own.