Sports & Play Safety
More than 2.6 million children receive medical treatment each year for sports and recreation-related injuries.
Participation in team sports and activities provides children with social, emotional and physical benefits as they develop. However, experiencing an injury and having to watch from the sidelines can be detrimental to a child furthering their experience in the activity.
- Before playing an organized sport, children should have a pre-participation physical exam. This can help rule out any potential medical conditions that may place your young athlete at risk.
- Document phone numbers, doctor information and allergy information for the coach in case of an emergency.
- Warm-up and stretching exercises prior to games and practice releases muscle tension and help prevent sport-related injuries. Make sure there is time set aside before every practice and game for athletes to warm up properly.
- Take time off from one sport to prevent overuse injuries. It is an opportunity to get stronger and develop skills learned in another sport.
- Hydration before, during and after each physical activity helps prevent heat illness and muscle cramping.
- Wear appropriate and fitted protective gear for the sport or activity to prevent injuries during practice and competition.
- Learn the signs and symptoms of heat illness and concussion. This information is important for coaches, parents, caregivers and athletes. At least one adult should be on-site that is certified in first aid, CPR and AED.
- Make rest a priority to prevent overuse of muscles, heat illness and fatigue.
- Be conscious of the weather and know when the heat index and humidity are too high or when a storm might occur.
- Be a supportive parent or caregiver.