by Robert B. Boyle, MPT, COO, Physical Therapist, December 20, 2016
Participation in organized sports is an important part of growing up. Young people receive many benefits from being a student athlete, including developing their fitness, team building and leadership skills. As with any physical activity, there is also a risk of injury that can leave your child on the sidelines during the season. In fact, studies over the past decade have revealed a large increase in the number of injuries of adolescent athletes. Luckily, there are ways to condition your student's body to help prevent injuries during the season.
Often, we see young players on the bench for the season with a sports-related injury. They have to sit and cheer, while their teammates get to play. There may be a good way to prevent your child from being on the injured list. In a study of 300 female soccer players, 42 of those athletes took part in a seven-week, pre-season conditioning program. At the end of the season, all 300 of the students in the study experienced some form of injury, stress or strain to areas of their thighs and legs (more specifically, in their knees and ankles.) However, those participating in the pre-season conditioning program experienced fewer injuries. Another study of male student soccer players in 2002 revealed that a strong pre-season prevention program, especially in players new to the game, helped to reduce injuries during the season. Key components to both studies were education and close supervision by the students' coaches.
We encourage to ask your athlete's coach about his or her views on pre-season conditioning. Another way to make sure your athlete is conditioned properly before he or she gets into the game is to consult a physical therapist, such as the professionals at Rehab 1st. Our experts can work with you and your child and set him or her on a pre-season conditioning program tailored especially for a desired sport. Every activity uses and puts stress on different muscles. The qualified professionals at Rehab 1st can explain the processes of muscle use and teach your athlete how to properly treat and condition those targeted areas to avoid serious injury during the season. We are here to help. Call for a consultation or visit our website to see how Rehab 1st can prepare your student to be in top form before his or her first game.
(Rehab 1st is a comprehensive rehabilitation center with convenient Maryland locations on the Downtown Cumberland Mall and Main Street in Frostburg. As a locally owned and operated company, Rehab 1st is dedicated to serving the tri-state area's rehabilitation needs.)