Studies have shown that participation in extracurricular activities does not necessarily suppress delinquency. For example, white football players are more likely to drink alcohol. Female soccer players are more likely to be aggressive. Male basketball players are less likely to smoke weed.
Research to date has ben based on inconsistent operationalized definitions of “delinquency.” What constitutes delinquency? Some research included use of profanity, tardiness, truancy, drug use, etc. None of them were consistent with their measures. Additionally, different studies included different activities such as religious, martial arts, sports, non sports, etc.
The Cambridge Somerville Youth Study showed that putting at risk youths together only makes them more at risk. Scared Straight also is ineffective. So what works? Good parenting? Avoiding external influences? Or is it moot due to human nature?
This was my thesis topic for my first graduate degree. If you are interested in this topic, please contact me.