Exercising caution about sports injuries
Keeping Brooklyn Healthy

Exercising caution about sports injuries

Every year millions of American kids get hurt practicing or playing a sport. As more of them get involved with high school teams, park-sponsored leagues and clubs — about 30 million according to the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine — the greater likelihood a young athlete will sustain an injury.

More than 3.5 million kids under age 14 receive some form of medical treatment for sports injuries each year. At the high school level, athletes account for an estimated 2 million injuries, 500,000 doctor visits and 30,000 hospitalizations every year.

Today, young athletes are pushing the limit of their bodies and their sport much more than 10 or 15 years ago, and more kids are doing this earlier and earlier.

The result? Overuse injuries doctors once saw only in adults are now more common among children. And this includes young athletes in every sport, from tennis to baseball.

So what can kids do to minimize their risk on the playing field?

  • Have your child undergo a thorough physical exam.
  • Establish a good general fitness routine before participating in a sport, ideally two months before the season begins.
  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.
  • Don’t play your sport year around. Take time to rest your muscles.
  • Cross-train by avoiding the same activity every day.
  • Strength train and condition. This doesn’t mean power lifting. Pre-adolescents should begin resistance training with light weights and multiple repetitions.
  • Group children by athletic ability and weight instead of strict age pairing.

If your child or you suffer from a sports-related injury, please call our Division of Orthopaedics at 718.250.7700. 

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