Sports Related Injuries Are Becoming All To Common. With School Back In Session We Look For Ways To Help Prevent Our Children From Becoming Victims Of School Sports In Ohio And Around The Country
School sports are a fun and an engaging way to teach children elements of teamwork, collaboration, motor skills, and old-fashioned fun. However, all sports are competitive, which carries the additional risk for school sports injuries. When children get intensely involved in sports, they are more likely to be injured.
A 2008 study of over 7 million sports-playing children found that all sports could be risky, and have an average incident rate of about 1 injury per 1000 activity exposures. Although this rate seems low, when you consider that the average sports match has about 40 activity exposures just in one game, the number of activity exposures quickly adds up when you consider all the matches and practices that children have. [http://woodtv.com/2015/08/20/what-to-watch-out-for-common-sports-injuries/, September 2015]
Reports and common sense shows that children are at higher risk for injury than adults because they are still developing, have less coordination, are more likely to take risks, and have slower reaction times. Differences in height and weight at the same age can also play a role in school sports injuries risk. It is important to place your child in an appropriate age group for his or her sport. There may also be different skill level within leagues that should also be considered. [http://www.tylerpaper.com/TP-News+Other/223637/do-all-you-can-to-lessen-sports-injury-causes, September 2015]
Ways to prevent some of the common school sports related injuries can be done by checking for safety in the following areas:
School Sports, Playing Surface
The surface that a child is playing on should be routinely inspected with safety in mind. Look for holes or rocks that could cause injuries. Concrete is not an ideal play surface and should be avoided, if at all possible. Trained, professional adults should supervise all matches at all times. Only put your children in leagues that promote safety and follow all legal limits. This will go a long way toward preventing school sports injuries.
Preparation For School Sports
Kids need to be prepared to play the sport they are engaged in. Encourage practice both during official practice sessions and at home. Practicing skills can help reduce school sports injuries. Make sure your child stays hydrated before, during, and after games with plenty of fluids. Healthy food will also provide your children with the energy they need to engage in sports.
School Sports Equipment
Children should always use properly sized safety gear for the sport they are playing. Helmets should always be worn in softball, baseball, bike riding, skating, hockey, and skateboarding. Make sure your child is wearing all appropriate safety gear down to the mouth guard and safety grips on bats. Shoes should fit well and be designed for use during that sport.
Only purchase equipment that is approved by the organizations that govern each sport. The National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment sets the standard in the United States for facemasks, shin guards, and helmets. All equipment should meet these guidelines and be replaced when it starts to show signs of wear.
Sports Related Injuries
Watch carefully for signs of injury. Not all injuries are evident right away and some children may push off medical attention to keep playing. Injuries that are ignored can have serious consequences, so always instruct your children to pay attention to any warning signs, such as confusion after a hard knock on the head, which could be a sign of a concussion or pain in his ankles, knees or shoulders. Also, do not let your children play through overuse injuries. If a muscle is tired and worn, the best healing for it is rest. Swelling and chronic pain are common signs of overuse injuries.
If you are unsure it is always best to consult your coach, team physician or family doctor. If severe injuries occur and you are suspicious of neglect on the coaches or schools part you should considered contacting an attorney that can help with communication between you and the parties in question.