Media Contact: Mary Colliver
LEXINGTON, Ky. (Mar. 10, 2010) −As winter turns into
spring and temperatures increase, so does the amount of time that
children spend outdoors playing spring sports. This means that the
number of injuries to children can also increase.
Each year, more than 30 million children participate in sports in the
United States and more than 3.5 million children ages 14 and under are
treated for sports injuries. While collision and contact sports are
associated with higher rates of injury, injuries from individual sports
tend to be more severe.
In team sports, most injuries – 62 percent – occur during practices, not games.
“The most common types of sport-related injuries in children are
sprains (mostly ankle), muscle strains, bone or growth plate injuries,
repetitive motion injuries and heat-related illness,” says Sherri
Hannan, a nurse and coordinator of Safe Kids Fayette County, led by Kentucky Children's Hospital. “When
we think of sports injuries, we tend to think of dramatic tackles or
falls, such as the plays you often see on highlight reels, but young
athletes are also at risk of injuries. If your coach recommends certain
types of warm-ups, it’s not just to make you a better athlete — it will
help keep you from getting hurt.”
Safe Kids Fayette County recommends these precautions for all children playing or practicing any individual or team sport.
Before signing up for a sport, get a general physical exam..
Always wear appropriate protective gear for the activity — for
practice as well as games — and make sure it’s the right size and
Always do your warm-ups and cool-downs. If it’s important before and after a game, it’s important before and after practice too.
Make sure responsible adults know and enforce the safety rules of the
sport, are present to provide supervision, and are trained in first
aid and CPR.
Never “play through” an injury. Get immediate help from a coach or
trainer and be sure to mention everything that hurts or aches. All
coaches should have a plan for dealing with emergencies.
If you’re playing outside, wear sunscreen that is SPF 15 or higher.
Follow the rules. In most sports, the rules are based not only on sportsmanship, but safety.
Last but not least:
“Stay hydrated,” says Hannan. “Drink plenty of water or electrolyte
sports drinks before and during the activity, and rest frequently
during hot weather. A child can lose up to a quart of sweat during two
hours of exercise, and kids get overheated more quickly than adults and
cannot cool down as easily.”
For more information about sports safety, call Safe Kids Fayette County at 859-323-1153.
Safe Kids Fayette County works to prevent accidental childhood
injury, the leading killer of children 14 and under. Its members
include health and safety experts, educators, community leaders,
corporations, foundations, government representatives and volunteers to
educate and protect families. Safe Kids Fayette County is a member of
Safe Kids Worldwide, a global network of organizations dedicated to
preventing accidental injury. Safe Kids Fayette County was founded in