It’s the time of year when children start thinking about sports. That means there will inevitably be injuries. While children suffer sprains and bumps naturally, there’s a lot parents can do to help reduce risk of child sports injuries and keep their kids on the field as much as possible.
Football, basketball, baseball and soccer are responsible for the most emergency room visits each year, but nearly all child athletes are susceptible to injury. Strains and sprains are the most common sports injury suffered, which means many injuries are preventable. Keep your child active with strategies to avoid injuries:
- Stay Organized: While unsupervised play shouldn’t be discouraged, enroll your child in organized activities with experience coaches and trainers. Oversight encourages healthy habits and helps protect children as they build their skills.
- Warm Up, Cool Down: A proper warm-up and cool-down routine helps children ease into activities, protecting muscles, tendons and ligaments, while laying the foundation for lifelong good habits.
- Don’t Be a One-Sport Athlete: Specialization can wait. Kids who are active in more than one sport develop different muscle groups, avoid overuse of muscles and are less prone to injury.
- Let Them Set the Pace: Allowing kids to play at their own intensity won’t just make them enjoy their sport more. It keeps them from pushing too hard and inviting injuries of strain and overuse.
- Make Sure Fields Are In Good Condition: Poorly maintained playing surfaces aren’t just a drag. They’re a potential landmine of tripping hazards.