Fall Sports Safety

Whether competitive, recreational, seasonal or year round, sports can pose a certain risk of an injury. FOX 2's Charlie Langton spoke with the experts about how to avoid injuries.

The most common sports injuries are sprains, strains and stress fractures caused by excessive pressure to the body. There are some tips to stay sport safe as the school year begins:

Warm up, train and condition consistently. Make it a routine to warm up and stretch properly to maintain flexibility before starting activities. Do this before the school sport even on off days of the activity. Stretch the muscles and allow at least 30 seconds in each stretching position. Once the muscles are properly stretched, warm up with jumping jacks, walking or running for about three to five minutes.

Wear proper gear. Each sport has unique clothing and equipment that can help your child reach his or her highest potential during physical activity and help prevent injuries. Wear appropriate attire such as shoes, pads for the neck, shoulder, elbow, chest, knee and shin, mouthpieces, face guards, protective cups, eyewear and a helmet for your child's specific sport. Always remember to replace worn or old equipment, especially as your child grows. Be sure to check equipment often during the season for any fixes or new purchases that need to be made for safety.

Strengthen and increase flexibility. Conditioning exercises during practice strengthen muscles used in play, and stretching exercises after games or practice can also increase flexibility. Remind your child to always cool down and stretch all the muscles used. Stretching after the end of physical exercise is just as important as stretching before.

Take time to rest. Learn to recognize when the body is fatigued. Muscles that are fatigued lack the protective mechanisms in the body and increase risk for injuries. Rest and take a break, and use the time to hydrate the body with water.

Injuries should be treated immediately and taken seriously. If an injury does not properly heal, the chances of a recurrent injury or chronic pain may occur.

For more information about Lederman Kwartowitz Center for Orthopedics & Sports Medicine, CLICK HERE.