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Start of Baseball: PLAY BALLSEASONAL TIPS - April

Sport and Bicycle Safety

The Boston Globe

| Tips Before Playing |
| Wear The Gear |
| On the Field |
| Sports Injuries |

Tips Before Playing

The focus in sports is playing the game, but there are aspects that you should evaluate and prepare for in advance. Both parents and kids should be involved in this process. Taking care of the details outlined below before the season or game will add to enjoyment of the sport and help prevent injuries. Questions for Parents to Ask Tips for Parents and Kids Remember the most important thing: have fun. Play with safety!

Wear the Gear

Safety equipment may reduce injuries, but protective gear is often not worn due to lack of awareness, inappropriate or unavailable equipment, or lack of money to buy the equipment. As parents, coaches and players, we can become better informed and prepared to have our children participate safely in sports activities.The following list includes gear recommended for youth sports. Use safety equipment at all times, including practices. While you can't wear these for protection, you should know that moveable soccer goals can hurt or kill. At least 18 children died and 60 children were injured by moveable soccer goals during the past 15 years. Many are unstable and are either unanchored or not anchored properly. These moveable goals pose an unnecessary risk of tipping over to children who climb on goals or nets or hang from the crossbar.

On the Field

Many factors contribute to players' safety once they begin playing, including good sportsmanship, safety equipment, adult supervision, and a plan for first-aid treatment.

Here are tips for safe playing for games and practices:

Sports Injuries

Sports injuries fall into two main categories.
  1. Chronic repetitive or overuse injuries, such as stress fractures, muscle tears or progressive bone deformities.
  2. Acute injuries, occurring as a result of trauma from a major force, such as fractures, dislocations, and more serious injuries like traumatic brain and spinal injuries.
Of all the traumatic brain injuries to children in the U.S., 21 percent result from sports and recreational activities. Although children can suffer injuries in any sport, some have a higher injury rate than others. Each year, more than one-half million children 5-14 experience sports-related injuries during participation in the following six sports: basketball, football, baseball, softball, soccer, and gymnastics. So if your child is playing one of these "high-injury incidence" sports, you need to be extra careful and attentive to safety measures. Age and Gender Sports injuries are three times more common for boys than for girls. Prior to puberty, the risk of sports-related injury between boys and girls is the same. At puberty, boys gain in both strength and size and are injured more often and more seriously than girls. The seriousness of injuries for both sexes increases with age and level of competition. A less-developed child competing against a mature child is at a greater risk for injury. Children should be matched and grouped according to similar skill level, weight and physical maturity, especially for contact sports.

Eye Protection

Injuries to eyes are common. Blunt objects - paint balls, hockey sticks, ski poles - can fit inside the eye socket and cause devastating injuries. Objects larger than the eye can still injure, as they deform on impact. These injuries tend to be less serious and occur in baseball, basketball, racket sports, and soccer. Sunglasses, eye protectors, and prescription lenses should be made of non-breakable, polycarbonate material. Where impact with large objects may cause head and face well as eye injury (e.g. hockey, football, lacrosse), a helmet/face mask system is best. Protection is important for vulnerable eyes (previous surgery, infection, extreme nearsightedness) or for those with only one good eye (vision less than 20/40).

Have a safe and happy season

Mrs. Kramer, RN

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