With the go ahead from the Government for Children’s sports to resume as at July 1, it is important for parents to be aware of injury prevention for their children. Recent research has discovered that 40% of injuries in children is linked to sports-related activity. This astonishing statistic shows how common injury can be and the importance of helping your child prevent this from happening.
While the risk of your child being injured during sport is high, the benefits of your child playing a sport most definitely outweighs this risk. It’s no secret that physical activity is great for physical and mental health. It teaches your child how to be a team player and encourages good sportsmanship. To ensure your child can play a whole season of sport injury-free, follow the below tips to reduce the risk:
- Warm up – Warming up the body through static stretching and dynamic movement increases the heart rate and blood circulation, loosens joints and warms up the muscles. This in turn prepares the body for more vigorous movement.
- Cool down – After intense activity, it is important to cool down the body through easy exercises and stretches to allow the body to transition to a resting state. By allowing the body to cool down properly, it reduces the risk of injury.
- Wear proper gear – Ensuring your child is wearing appropriate protective equipment for their sporting activity can also reduce the risk of injury. Equipment such as pads, mouth guards, helmets, head guards, and eyewear are designed to reduce impact to the specified area of the body to protect from any forceful contact. While this will not stop injury from occurring, it will reduce the risk.
- Know when to stop – It is vital to teach your child when to stop and have a break. Whether they have hurt themselves, or just not feeling 100%, they must stop and rest. Overusing your body can lead to injury.
- Keep hydrated and cool – Ensuring your child is drinking adequate amounts of fluid during and after sport is essential. Keeping your child hydrated maintains their body temperature and lubricates their joints. It is also important to ensure they are not wearing too many layers of clothing to avoid their body from overheating, even in the cooler months.
While the above tips will help to prevent injury, it will not guarantee an injury-free sporting season. If your child does encounter pain or a sporting injury, ensure to seek professional advice from your local physiotherapist. They will be able to determine exactly what is going on by listening to your child’s sporting history and provide the appropriate treatment for recovery.