Do High School Athletes Earn More Pay? Youth Sport Participation and Earnings as an Adult

in Sociology of Sport Journal
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This paper reports on tests of relationships between participation in organized sport as a youth and earned income in adulthood. The data are drawn from a sample survey of adult Canadians. The results, both before and after appropriate controls, show that those who participated in organized sport as a youth tended to have higher annual earned incomes as adults than those who did not participate in this way. The relationships are stronger and more consistent for males than females across social subgroups defined by education level completed. Further supplemental analyses compare the explanatory import of youth sport participation and other forms of voluntary community involvement as a youth. Also presented are interpretations of the results, which emphasize the “cultural and social capital” and “physical capital” outcomes of involvement in youth sport activity.

J. Curtis is with the Department of Sociology and the Faculty of Applied Health Studies, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON. W. McTeer is with the Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education, Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, ON. P. White is with the Department of Kinesiology, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON.

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