I get requests from guest bloggers often, and this one struck a chord. It’s important we are all informed. I feel very strongly about this as well. My husband works in Sports Television and especially with NFL games. We talk often about how scary it is today for our kids to play football as the consequences have grown so great. Please read blow from my guest blogger, John O’Connor.
Keeping Kids Safe As They Play
“Participating in sports like lacrosse, soccer or football can instill invaluable life skills like leadership, teamwork and discipline in our children. With all the fun and health benefits that come with playing sports, participation in these sports does not come without risks, unfortunately. As parents it is our job to become fully educated on the potential risks that come with playing sports and ways in which we can help protect our children.
The National Football League over the years has been working ways to improve the safety of players participating in these sports. Injuries like concussions or ligament tears have become a common occurrence among football players. The NFL has decided to make it a top priority to improve the safety of the NFL players to prevent these injuries. Changes to certain rules like prohibiting players from using the helmet to hit others or not hitting quarterbacks below the knees are examples of how they are improving the safety of the sport.
While the NFL has implemented these rules, they are seeing how their efforts can improve the safety of athletes of all ages. Educating people on the dangers of contacts sports has become a priority; they have launched the NFL Evolution to promote awareness about safety in youth sports. As a parent of a young athlete, I appreciate the organization taking leadership on such an important subject.
Each year, over 3 million children under the age of 14 participate in organized football, putting them at risk for concussions. A concussion is a minor traumatic brain injury that can occur as a result of sudden contact with an object. Symptoms of the condition include headache, nausea and confusion. More severe symptoms can include memory loss and even hearing loss. If permanent hearing loss occurs, the use of hearing aid may be required to help increase hearing levels for better hearing. Parents can protect their children in several ways.
• Wearing the right protective headgear while playing
• Ensuring that all protective gear is the right fit and size
• Instruct kids on how best to use their bodies while playing
• Seek immediate medical attention when injury is suspected
Ligament tears are another common sports injury among young athletes. The ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) injury prevents the body from being able to stabilize the knee and protect it from improper movement or shifting. Athletes feel this when they run, jump or land while doing certain sports. Here are some ways that athletes can prevent ligament tears.
• Athletes should complete specific training drills that teach them proper balance, power and agility
• Strengthening the areas surrounding the knee and the muscles within the leg
• Allotting proper time to warm up their muscles and loosen up
Children who train during the summer months in certain sports face risks of heat exhaustion. During these months, the extreme temperatures can cause injuries. Luckily, most of these injuries can be prevented. These are some extra precautions parents can take in protecting their children.
• Children should be hydrated
• Light clothing should always be worn
• Sunscreen should always be worn
Sports are great way for children to have a good time, but as parents, we must make sure that our children are safe while they play. Taking these extra precautions will ensure that your child remains safe while having fun.
Hi my name is John O’Connor, I am a father, outdoorsman, sports enthusiast and passionate about living a healthy lifestyle. Check out my new blog at bloggingwjohno.blogspot.com!”
Thanks, John! Great post!