Every year we hear the saddest news to come out of little league sports, another child has sustained a permanent injury from a sport they enjoy. While football certainly isn’t the only sport children sustain injuries in, it is statistically the sport where children do suffer injuries the most frequent. So what can we do to protect our little ones while they enjoy a community game of football?
Keeping Your Favorite Little Football Players Safe this Season
We know your ultimate responsibility is keeping your children safe through all sports, so here’s a few helpful tips on how to achieve that.
Make Sure Your Child is Ready
While in many cases, you as the parent are ultimately ready to enjoy and worry about all the things that come along with children’s sports, it’s very much up to your children to decide when they are really ready to enter into community sports. Before age six, children lack the motor skills, attention span, and balance required to play football. But by age 10 or 12, they are the most physically and cognitively prepared for the game. So while it’s certainly not inherently harmful to enter them into the game before then, it’s best to make sure it’s a ‘junior’ version of the game more in tune with your child’s age group’s capabilities.
Get Geared Up
Make sure your child is the most prepared by having all of the required gear.
- Neck Pads
- Shoulder Pads
- Elbow Pads
- Knee Pads
- Shin Guards
- Face Guard
Above all make sure the gear is not worn, in good condition, fitting for a child your child’s size and worn correctly, every single time.
Choose the Best Community Programs
Talk with other parents in your area and find the best program to enroll your children into. Make sure the program is committed to each player’s safety and injury prevention. Check to make sure the coach running your program is trained in all of the most relevant first aid skills including CPR. They should also be very well versed in the equipment, safety rules and a little bit of more than general knowledge about children’s biology never hurts.
Remember that practice always makes perfect and perfect is a lot less apt to become injured. Don’t forget about training. Pre-season training could be a family affair, but even if it’s just the budding athlete, make sure warm-ups are a part of their game.