5 Tips for Preventing Sports Injuries in Kids
Parents have to realize that when their children decide to play a sport, the risk for injuries increases immensely. Your child can do anything from tearing tendons, pulling muscles and breaking bones while participating in sports. The important thing to think about after an injury is finding out if a bone is broken, so it’s best to take your child into urgent care as soon as possible to find out what happened. Sprains are very common and can actually be worse than a break, however; when your child has a break, it’s important they don’t damage their growth plates or they hands, arms, feet, etc, might be smaller than the other limb as they continue to grow. This is why it’s very important to talk to your kids about the possibilities of a sports injury and the possible ramifications.
Sports injuries can occur for two different reasons which are trauma of some sports and overuse. Sports injuries often look traumatic as you watch someone fall down and holding their injury, the overuse aspect of injuries are far more common. This type of injury happens when the body keeps pushing itself past the physical limits. In addition, inadequate technique, mistakes with a trainer, running way too far or not warming up properly is the culprit. Here are five injury prevention tips that can help your youngster from getting hurt by a sports injury.
Parents should learn that setting goals that are realistic is a good idea and your child can work hard to reach these goals. Goals should be able to be achieved as well as sustained. If the goal is to swim more laps, lift a desired amount of weight or run in a certain direction, set a goal that is possible to obtain for your child. They can work on improving the goals gradually.
Parents should help their child plan to exercise regularly before they start a new regiment. This is why they should be seen by their family doctor to talk about their options. They should also take time to learn the correct ways that are required four their sport or program. Working with a personal trainer is helpful and there are classes available for them to sign up for. The classes are safe and fun and a good way to start a new activity.
Warm Up, Cool Down
Tell your children how important it is to warm up before any physical activities because research states that muscles that become nice and heated, are less likely to become a strain. Your child can start out by doing some light walking or jogging before they start their exercise and then when they are done, you can show them how to cool down their muscles slowly. Learning to be flexible is easier for kids and another good way to prevent a sports injury. They can do this by stretching before and after their workout. Make sure the body is warmed up before they do any stretching because this is the best time for them to stretch.
Don’t be in a Hurry
Make sure you teach your children not too push themselves too fast. When a person is starting to get in shape or learning a new sport they like, this takes time to learn. They need to know that they have to prepare for enough time so they can gradually increase the training levels on their bodies. This is helpful because the body has time to adjust to the new stresses on their bones, joints, and muscles. A good idea is when they start running, just increase their mileage gradually and give themselves enough time to recover and rest between their workouts.
Always Listen to what their Body is Telling Them
Parents don’t be afraid to tell your children to adjust the activities they are doing if their bodies begin to feel too much stress. Granted, there is going to be good pain that is associated with trying a new sport or activity, but the pain should never be excruciating. A muscle ache that is short lived is what you are looking for when your children begin and complete their program. Any type of pain in their joints is not good and their body is telling them to cut back a bit.
Sports camps and more structured activities have become very popular, and most kids love to play the sport they choose year round. The more time they are on the field, the more risk of getting sports-related injuries, and this also can include ACL and meniscus injuries in the knee and injuries to their shoulders and elbows. Always remember that they need to eat a well-balanced diet of the seven groups of food and keep their eating schedule regular. If your athlete is in a sport that has them maintaining a certain weight like wrestling, make sure they are following a good and healthy safe meal plan.
Heat illness is very serious for athletes. The days to watch are the days that the heat and humidity are very high. Parents should always make sure their kids have enough water before, during and after playtime. Don’t forget to watch for any signs of any type of heat illness, which includes nausea, tired, vomiting, disorientation or fainting. Don’t fool around and take any kind of heat-related illness seriously and take them into urgent care or to the emergency room. If this is really serious, call 911 and the ambulance will help keep them from passing out while they are on their way to the hospital. Once a person has heat stroke, they have problems tolerating the heat for a long time or possibly forever.
There are many athletes that have injuries and never have had them looked at or fixed. This can affect your child later in life in their 40’s and 50’s so you have to get your child to a doctor as soon as possible. If you see any changes in your child like limping, favoring a leg by rubbing it during their activity, have your child put on the sidelines. If the problem doesn’t go away, get your child some medical help before they return back to play in their favorite sports-related activities.