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5 Ways to Prevent Your Child’s Sports Injury
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5 Ways to Prevent Your Child’s Sports Injury

You may not be surprised to learn that the number of kids suffering from sports injury is on the rise. According to the CDC, over 3.5 million kids below the age of 14 receive medical treatment for sports related injuries every year. The good news is that these injuries can be prevented. In fact, the CDC estimates that more than half of the cases are preventable. By taking the following precautions, you can protect your child from a needless injury.

1. Treat every day like game day.

According to many statistics, over half of sports related injuries occur during practice. Nevertheless, parents and coaches aren’t asking kids to take the same precautions during practice as they do on game day. Though your kids may find it tedious at first, requiring them to warm up, take breaks, and use protective gear every day will ensure that they won’t be left on the sidelines for the big game.

2. Remind them to warm-up.

Athletes of all ages can find warm ups tedious, but skipping them is never a good idea. Increasing flexibility is one of the best ways to prevent cartilage damage like ankle sprains. Stretching daily is the best way to prevent injury and decrease soreness.

3. Forget the “no pain, no gain” mentality.

While lots of coaches and parents use this phrase to encourage kids to work harder, this mentality can be detrimental to their health. One of the easiest ways to cause serious injuries is by ignoring a minor one. Make sure kids know its ok to take a break, especially if they are in pain. Having kids rest, icing the area that hurts, and taking them to a doctor are much wiser in the long-term that encouraging them to ignore the pain.

4. Keep practice well rounded and ongoing.

Though it’s important to have kids rest during the week, long periods of inactivity are a different matter. Tendon damage and repetitive strain injuries are often caused by an abrupt transition from inactivity to activity. To avoid this, encourage your kids to be active throughout the year, not just during soccer or basketball season. Along these lines, it can be great to have kids participate in different sports and activities so that aspects of their physical fitness aren’t neglected.

5. Talk to your kids about the risks.

While you certainly don’t want to dampen your child’s enthusiasm for sports, it can be helpful to talk to them about their risk of injury. Explaining the risks can encourage kids to be safe during practice. There are also some great kid-friendly resources online like kidshealth.org which offer children relatable advice for injury prevention.

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