National Youth Sports Safety Month

Learn more about youth sports safety during this month dedicated to the cause.

spotlight on ice hockey equipment - youth sports safety month
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Event: National Youth Sports Safety Month

Date: Every April

Location: N/a; anywhere kids play organized sports

Organizer: Originally founded by the National Youth Sports Safety Foundation

What to do: With spring and summer sports getting underway, National Youth Sports Safety Month is a good reminder to parents of young athletes. If your child is involved in youth sports, it's imperative that you educate yourself about the risk of injuries, especially concussions and any other injury that is particularly associated with your child's chosen sport.

The American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine publishes specific injury prevention tip sheets for 25 different sports and activities, from baseball to wrestling (and including nontraditional sports, such as dance and inline skating). Sports injuries at school and at sports camp require particular prevention efforts; read up if your child participates in those settings.

Did you know: Eye Safety and Kids' Sports

It's also important to speak to your athlete about injury risk and prevention. This month might be a good prompt to do that. Topics you can discuss:

  • How your child can protect himself (by wearing protective equipment; doing proper warm-ups, stretches, and conditioning exercises; eating healthy foods; and getting a pre-participation sports physical, for example, along with specific strategies depending on his sport, position, age, skill level, previous injuries, and so on)
  • What an athlete should do if she sustains an injury (stop playing and tell an adult; seek medical attention, especially if a concussion is suspected)
  • What to do if a coach or teammates pressures your child to play while hurt (get help from a parent and/or a medical professional)

Keeping sports safe requires an entire culture of injury awareness and prevention—so adults don't ever tell kids to "shake it off" and keep playing, and kids don't hide injuries because they fear repercussions or a loss of playing time.

Did you know: How SafeSport Helps Your Child

If you are a team mom or dad or are otherwise involved in a youth sports organization, consider hosting an event spotlighting safety practices this month. Invite an athletic trainer, physical therapist, or other health professional to speak with players, parents, and coaches about safety. Or look to your sport's governing body for health and safety guidelines and resources, such as safety videos or printed materials. You could even ask your local sporting goods store or pro shop to do a special promotion on safety equipment. If you hold sports gear swaps (this month or anytime), make sure buyers and sellers know what equipment is safe to reuse and what isn't.

Did you know: Heat Illness Treatment and Prevention

See all April family fitness events.

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