Are you a youth sports coach or parent looking to protect your kids’ from everyday youth sports injuries? Need some quick and easy tips to teach your kids so you can rest easy watching them play?
5 Ways to Prevent Youth Sports Injuries
Playing sports can be fun. Injuries, not so much. Here are 5 easy strategies for preventing and reducing youth sports injuries, so you can teach your kids a safer (and better) way to play.
1. Tell Kids to Always Wear a Helmet
The best way to prevent youth sports injuries is by equipping your kids’ with the gear that will protect them. If your kid is playing a sport or doing an activity where they could easily injure their head, they should absolutely wear a helmet. This protective gear is essential when playing sports like hockey, baseball, football, softball, skating, biking, or skateboarding.
Research shows that wearing a helmet can reduce a child’s risk of brain injury (and even death) during a fall or collision. If your child does fall when wearing a helmet, the gear will absorb the force, which will protect their head and developing brain.
2. Provide Kids With the Appropriate Gear
While a helmet is an important piece of equipment, it’s not the only protective gear your child should wear when playing a sport. Many sports require additional types of protection like mouthguards, knee guards, knee pads, elbow pads, and eye protection. Before you send your kid out to play, make sure you know the specific sports gear they need for that sport.
Here are a list of sports that commonly require protective gear:
If you’re unsure of what gear your child needs, ask their coach or gym teacher at school. And remember to make sure they’re always using this gear, even when playing pick up games with their friends.
3. Teach Kids the Rules of the Games
Sports Injuries can easily occur when a kid doesn’t know what they’re doing. An easy way to prevent injuries is by making sure they know the ins-and-outs of whatever sport they’re playing.
When a kid knows what moves in a game are legal and illegal, they’ll be more likely to avoid ending up with an injury.
4. Make Sure Kids Warm Up Beforehand
Before your kid plays any sports, they should make sure they’re warmed up and stretched. By doing static and dynamic stretches, they can loosen up their muscles, which will make them ready to play.
Prior to playing kids should do the following kinds of stretching and warm-up activities:
- Toe touches
- Walking knee hugs
- Arm circles
- Jumping jacks
If your child is warmed up and properly stretched, they’ll be less likely to injure themselves as they play.
5. Make Sure Kids Take Breaks Between Plays
One of the major (and often most forgotten) ways of preventing injuries is allowing for ample recovery time. If your child plays multiple sports or has a habit of over-exerting themselves, they’ll experience muscle fatigue, which will only end up predisposing them to injuries like sprains or fractures.
Encourage your child to rest often, and during the off-season, make sure they have plenty of time to recuperate. By taking these simple steps, you can greatly reduce the risk of injury.
Final Thoughts on Preventing Youth Injuries
When it comes to youth sports injuries, the most important thing to teach kids is to play safe. By following the 5 easy tips in this article, you can set your kid up for athletic success, and rest easy knowing they’re less likely to get injured.
Are you the parent of a youth athlete? Are you worried they may have injured themselves?
Contact us if you need urgent care!