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Injury Rates Among Youth Athletes

  
  
  
Injury Rates Among Youth Athletes

Approximately 8,000 children are treated in emergency rooms each day for sports-related injuries. According to USAToday.com, sprains and strains, fractures, contusions, abrasions and concussions top the list of sports-related ER diagnoses for kids ages 6 to 19. Interestingly, most of these sports-related injuries (62% in fact) happen during practices, not games. Some argue that we as a culture are simply better are reporting sports-injuries, as opposed to just telling kids to "play through it" and that's why injury rates seem to have gone up. Others argue that early specialization and increased competitiveness are pushing players too hard to fast, meaning more injuries among younger players.

Don't Take Concussions Lightly

  
  
  
Don't Take Concussions Lightly

The Institute of Medicine reported that “The number of athletes aged 19 and younger who were treated for concussions and other sports and recreation-related traumatic brain injuries rose from 150,000 in 2001 to a quarter million in 2009…”, a 66% spike. Some contend this increase is partially due to better diagnostic and reporting procedures, and not that kids are actually getting hurt more today than they have in past years. But whether athletes are more likely to be concussed in today's youth sports arena or not, concussions are serious injuries that we can't afford to take lightly.

Are Female Athletes Getting Hurt More Frequently than Male Athletes?

  
  
  
Are Female Athletes Getting Hurt More Frequently than Male Athletes?

While young girls can easily "keep up" with the boys when it comes to sports, around puberty the physical differences between a young female athlete and a young male athlete really start to show. Higher levels of testosterone allow boys to add muscle and get stronger quickly. But in turn, they become less flexible. Girls, as their estrogen levels increase, tend to naturally add more fat than muscle and have to train harder to get stronger. However, estrogen helps makes girls’ ligaments lax, meaning they typically outperform boys when it comes to overall body flexibility. And while flexibility is a huge advantage in some sports, especially gymnastics, it also represents greater risk for injury when female athletes don't have sufficient muscle strength to keep their joints in stable, safe positions.

Superstitions and Athletic Performance

  
  
  
Superstitions and Athletic Performance

Plenty of professional athletes have their own sports superstitions. For instance, tennis pro Serena Williams only wears the same pair of socks throughout a single tournament run. Michael Jordan always worse his North Carolina basketball shorts under his Bulls uniform. And of course, entire leagues of players and male fans start growing their playoff beards once their team hits the post season. And never, ever, ever mention the words “not-hitter” to a pitcher that is on a roll. After all, it’s only crazy if it doesn’t work, right?

The Real Dangers of Putting Concussed Athletes Back in the Game

  
  
  
The Real Dangers of Putting Concussed Athletes Back in the Game

Accidents can and do happen in youth sports. Scrapped knees and elbows, bruises, sprained ankles; even with the best laid safety measures kids can get hurt if they are playing hard and fast. And oftentimes these accidents aren’t really anyone’s “fault”; they are just an unfortunate side effect of playing sports. But sometimes someone is clearly in the wrong and when dealing with a concussed athlete the person who let that player back into the game before they were medically cleared is responsible for happens to that player.

Cheerleaders Aren’t Safe From Sports Injury

  
  
  
Cheerleaders Aren’t Safe From Sports Injury

Although some may argue that cheerleading isn’t a “real” sport (for the record I am a proud cheer mom!), more and more reports are coming out that indicate the risks of injury to cheerleaders are plenty real. According to NBCNews.com, concussion rates among cheerleaders are growing at an alarming rate;

If a Child Gets Injured Playing Sports Who Is to Blame?

  
  
  
If a Child Gets Injured Playing Sports Who Is to Blame?

If you run a basic Google search for “sue school over injury” you’ll find 12,700,000 results. You might come across stories like this one, where a high school student is suing her school after getting hit in the head with a tennis ball during gym class. Or something like this, where a school in England ripped up their playground after paying millions of dollars to students that got hurt; including “a child who got more than £15,000 after falling off a wall and another who collected £6,000 after cutting a leg while sliding down a banister.” Many of us feel like we live in a “sue-happy” culture and too many parents are looking to point the finger at someone else when their child gets hurt. But even with the best intentions and precautions accidents happen in youth sports and kids can and will get hurt. But when that happens who is to blame?

Have Youth Sports Safety Concerns Gone Too Far?

  
  
  
Have Youth Sports Safety Concerns Gone Too Far?

We at SportsSignup are deeply committed to keep youth athletes as safe as possible on and off the field. Having athletic trainers on stand-by for middle school and high school games can mean the difference between life and death for some players, the right equipment (like proper fitting pads and helmets) can protect players from more serious injuries in full-contact sports, and a focus on fundamentals means players know how to protect themselves (such as knowing NOT to tackle with the crown of their head) from some injuries. But accidents can and do happen in youth sports, and while we’d like to see zero torn ACLs among high school soccer players we know that even with the best safety measures and precaution kids can still get hurt.

Steroid Abuse in High School Sports

  
  
  

Earlier this summer reports surfaced showing that now-defunct anti-aging clinic Biogenesis supplied performance-enhancing to professional baseball players like Alex Rodriguez. According to the New York Daily News, Porter Fischer, who originally leaked documents about Biogenesis, told ESPN "Outside the Lines" that founder Anthony Bosch supplied human growth hormone and Sermorelin to high school age athletes, some of whom were accompanied by their fathers when they visited the clinic.

The Positive Coach’s Approach to Concussions

  
  
  

This guest post is by David Jacobson of Positive Coaching Alliance, a national non-profit organization with the mission to transform the culture of youth sports so that youth athletes can have a positive, character-building experience.

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