Getting your kids involved in sports and recreational activities is an absolutely vital part of raising a healthy, well-rounded child. Whether individually or as part of a team, being active, learning discipline, and forming skills teach children important skills that they will be able to apply across all aspects of their lives as they grow up. However, there is injury risk inherent in all athletic activities, and this is especially the case for children, who are often less aware of the risks, and less in touch with their bodies. This means that the role of parenting a young athlete also involves a large dose of injury prevention. Here are three tips, which can be applied to nearly all sports or recreational activities, to encourage child safety.
The Importance of Warming Up
While children are generally more limber and less susceptible to the tweaks and strains that adults often suffer, warming up is still crucial for injury prevention. Instilling a positive attitude towards stretching and warming up will not only put them in peak position to succeed in whatever they’re participating in, but it will also keep them active as they age. Make sure that they are familiar with both static and dynamic stretching, to ensure a well-rounded warm up routine. Static stretching involves activities like toe touching, back bends, and resting yoga poses, while dynamic stretching includes motion, such as jumping jacks or leg swings.
Proper Diet and Hydration
Kids are often picky or naturally unhealthy eaters, more easily manipulated by candy and junk food advertising, and less aware of the positive benefits of healthy eating. This is where your role as a caring parent comes in. By promoting healthy but tasty meals and snacks for your child, you can give them the proper fuel for their athletic activities, which will also lead to injury prevention. Hydration can also be a struggle with children, but it may be the best injury prevention measure going. While sports drinks and juices can be more appealing for children, water is and will always be the best hydration method, so always send your children to any recreational event with a water bottle.
Build Rest Into The Schedule
This can be one of the most difficult things to do if you have an especially active child, so it usually takes the most deliberate effort on your end as a parent. Rest is the flip side of the recreation coin for any athlete, because giving your body the time to heal and recover is just as important as pushing yourself. Children have difficulty knowing their limits, so it’s your role as a parent to implement downtime for overly active children, to avoid overextending themselves. In order to best maximize rest time, encourage your child to take up another engaging activity, such as reading or playing an instrument, rather than allowing them to simply sit in front of the TV or tablet screen.
Implementing these child safety tips is a great injury prevention method, but even the best, most caring parent can’t prevent all injuries. If you or someone in your family is injured and seeking compensation, contact Evergreen Personal Injury Counsel, and we can help you get the justice you need.