Injuries In Young Athletes – What Parents Can Watch For
Spring is so close! As we near the end of winter, spring sports are already gearing up and ready to start again. The start of spring tends to be a busy time of year for most families with kids that play sports. More physical activity, more training, more equipment, and more parent taxis taking kids to practices! Along with those weekend games and after-school training sessions, we also see a lot more injuries. More often than not, injuries will go unnoticed (or unmentioned by your child) and eventually lead to worsening conditions in the future. These are sometimes referred to as musculoskeletal injuries, usually caused by trauma or overuse. Understanding these possible injuries and their signs is the first step to keeping your children safe and on the field.
Here are some signs of injuries for parents to watch out for:
What to watch for: Gradual pain, stiffness, aching, visible swelling, tenderness.
Ivy Rehab Network’s sports injury screenings are custom-designed for schools, affiliated organizations, and individual patients. Sports injury screenings are often paired with functional movement screenings, which are used to evaluate athletes’ movement patterns, functional limitations, and joint stability when in motion.
What to watch for: Popping sound, immediate pain/weakness, loss of motion.
The Ivy Rehab ACL Return-to-Sport program is part of a comprehensive ACL rehabilitation approach that takes the recovering athlete through a series of targeted and progressive tests to assess and train for correct movement techniques. This methodology will allow for a safe and optimal return to sport and lessens your chances of suffering another ACL injury.
What to watch for: General pain, swelling, warmth, bruising, redness, impaired movement.
Again, Ivy Rehab offers Complimentary Injury Screenings! Whether it’s a sprain, a twist, or just general pain, we’re here to help. Rather than doing research online and attempting to self-diagnose, come in and speak with a licensed physical therapist who can explain what’s going on and get your athlete back in the game with the proper treatment.
What to watch for: Headaches, lightheadedness, dizziness, nausea, and blurry vision.
We offer a Concussion Management Program that includes individualized programs designed by our physical therapists to treat your post-concussion symptoms.
Have that conversation
It is important to be as open with your kids as possible. Make it a point to teach them about playing smart and to encourage proper warm-up procedures. By opening the door of conversation, children will be more likely to talk about their pain without fearing the possible repercussions of sitting out. Be sure to follow up with any major falls and blunt force blows to the body. Regular pre-participation physicals are also vital for sports season and renewed confidence in your child’s wellbeing.
In every stage, Ivy Rehab Network is here for you and your family. For more information, contact us directly, or visit a location near you.
Article Reviewed by Holly Lookabaugh-Deur, PT, DSc, GCS, CEEAA
Holly Lookabaugh-Deur, PT, DSc, GCS, CEEAA is a practicing physical therapist and a partner and Director of Clinical Services at Ivy Rehab Network. Deur is board certified as a geriatric clinical specialist and certified exercise expert for aging adults with more than 35 years of clinical experience. She is certified as an aquatic and oncology rehabilitation specialist and serves as adjunct faculty at Central Michigan University and Grand Valley State University.