Youth Sports Injury Statistics that will Surprise You
Participation in organized sports in on the rise according to the U.S Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and nearly 30 million children and adolescents participate in youth sports in the United States. Of course occasional bumps and bruises are expected when kids play sports, but with the increase in play, it has led to some startling statistics about injuries among America’s young athletes.
Here are a few statistics you might find surprising:
- Approximately 3.5 million children and adolescents ages 14 and younger get hurt annually playing sports or participating in recreational activities.
- More than 775,000 children and adolescents ages 14 and younger are treated in hospital rooms for sports-related injuries each year. (The majority of the injuries occurred as a result of falls, being struck by an object, collisions, and overexertion during unorganized or informal sports activities)
- Although 62 percent of organized sports-related injuries occur during practice, one-third of parents do not have their children take the same safety precautions at practice that they would during a game.
- Overuse injuries are responsible for nearly half of all sports injuries to middle and high school students.
- Only 42 percent of high schools have access to athletic training services.
- According to the CDC, more than half of all sports injuries in children are preventable.
We found these statistics to be quite surprising. What can we do to help prevent injuries among our children and the young people of America? Here are a few tips to help prevent sports injuries:
- Prepare your kids for the demand of playing a sport.
- It is always a good idea to get a physical prior to the participation of any sport. This can help rule out any potential medical conditions that may place a young athlete at risk.
- Share contact information (phone numbers, doctor information, and allergy information) with your athlete’s coaches in case there is an emergency.
- If your athlete has a history of asthma or any other medical condition that requires special attention, meet with the coaches before the first practice to inform them of everything they should be aware of.
- Warm up and stretch before games and practices. Stretching before practice and games can release muscle tension and help prevent sports-related injuries such as muscle tears or sprains.
- Make sure your athlete stays hydrated. Have kids bring a water bottle to practice and games. (If you’re a coach, make your team take mandatory water breaks during games and practice.)
- Make sure your athlete wears the appropriate and properly fitted sports gear during practice and games, no matter how much they may whine about it.
- Know the signs of a concussion. If you suspect a possible concussion, seek the immediate attention of a medical professional.
- Remember that rest is important. Don’t let your athlete over do it.
At Northeast Spine and Sports Medicine, we know that accidents happen, especially when it comes to kids. We are happy to be there to help get your athlete back out on the field or court. We offer many treatment options for athletes and even non-athletes including, sports medicine, physical therapy,post-surgical rehabilitation and more. Contact us for an appointment to learn more.