There are many benefits to team sports, and they play such a huge role in the lives of growing kids and teens. They help teach the importance of discipline, cultivate a sense of dedication, and they highlight the necessity of teamwork in the most practical way.
There are, however, things to be aware of when your kids play sports—particularly in the heat of the summer. Safety is always the most important factor for parents, so what can be done to help ensure that your kids are safe on the field? What are some of the most dangerous summer sports, and what commonly seen injuries can they lead to? What equipment should you invest in to help keep your children safe?
Sports and Related Injuries to Be Aware Of
Football is one of the most dangerous sports out there, often ending with ankle or knee injuries. The scariest football injury, however, is the commonly seen head injury. It does seem that, in the wake of concerns regarding traumatic brain injuries in the sport, fewer children are playing football on a team than there once were. Unfortunately, sports and recreation are one of the most common causes of head injury.
Because basketball is so popular among both boys and girls in school, it leads in numbers against any other sport for how many students play each year. Some of the major injuries seen during basketball include ankle sprains and tears as well as ACL injuries.
Baseball is the most popular organized sport among kids between the ages of 6 and 8. Repetitive arm use in the sport means arm and shoulder stress is the most commonly seen injury among baseball players.
Equipment for Keeping Your Kids Safe
Schools will require the necessary safety equipment to be worn at all times, but it’s imperative that your kids stay protected even if they’re just playing sports in the backyard.
Helmets are essential when playing football, baseball, and softball in order to help prevent head injuries. Concerns surrounding concussions and what they might mean for children later in life are at the forefront of parents’ minds. Be sure to find a high-quality helmet made specifically for the sport your child is playing. It’s also important to ensure that it fits properly and will remain secure at all times.
Mouth guards are important to wear as well—particularly during contact sports where head injury could be a risk. Wearing wrist and ankle guards can help protect your child from sprains or strains if they trip or fall.
Other Safety Precautions to Keep in Mind
In addition to proper equipment, it’s important to keep in mind that the heat of the summer can take a huge toll on the body. Make sure your child is drinking plenty of water throughout the day. This is the best way to help protect them from heat stroke or dehydration.
Your child should also be warming up as much as possible before getting on the court or field. Injuries are far more likely to occur when the body hasn’t been properly prepared for strenuous activity. Dehydration can also lead to a muscular injury, so drinking water is another way of preparing the body for playing a sport.
If your child does become injured, be sure to keep them out of practice and games. Give them time for their body to fully heal. Allowing their body the proper amount of time to heal before putting it through more stress is imperative for recovery.