Sports safety is an important topic to discuss with your kids, with other parents and with coaches. Even young kids are susceptible to injuries and risks if you don’t take certain precautions and preventions. Being aware of your child’s own weaknesses, the workout and practice routines and the specific injuries associated with the sport will help you ensure your kids will stay safe.
Injuries depend mainly on the sport being played. Contact sports risk concussions, broken bones and sprains from running into one another. Kids who play sports involving balls or other projectiles risk being hit by the ball at high speeds. Any sport can involve cramps, muscle fatigue, exhaustion, dehydration and other injuries and illnesses.
Many injuries can be avoided with certain precautions. Helmets and other protective gear keep your child safe in competitive and recreational sports. Pick up the helmet that is right for the sport and make sure it fits him well. If padding, mouth guards or protective cups are generally used in the sport, make sure he has those as well. Help her understand her role in the game and make sure she has good communication with the coach. Knowing where she needs to be will help keep her safe.
Make sure your child warms up before heading out on the field, in the pool or on the court. Many coach led practices will include a healthy warm-up and stretch, but at a meet or game, your child may be responsible for this himself. Explain to him the importance of getting his body ready and help him put together a warm-up routine.
One of the biggest dangers in kids’ sports is too much stress. When kids feel the need to win at all costs, they may push themselves too hard and either hurt themselves or get hurt by a collision. Always have a positive attitude about the sport. Be proud of your child when he reaches his goals and supportive when he doesn’t. Remind him that his health is most important.
When your child is injured, he needs to rest. His desire to be with friends, to succeed in his sport or to reach a certain goal may lead him to want to keep playing, even with an injury. Encourage him to rest the injury. Use and cold packs to relieve the pain. Remind him that he will be a better asset when he is full healed. He could risk hurting himself or others by playing when he is not ready.