Lacrosse is one of the fastest growing youth sports in the United States. Based upon a Native American sporting ceremony, lacrosse combines many attributes of modern sports that it predates.
With the explosion in popularity also comes an increase in injuries. Youth lacrosse news is full of stories of players handling themselves improperly and suffering the consequences.
Here are common ways to prevent kid’s lacrosse injuries:
Proper equipment: Ensure the proper equipment is being used and is properly fitted. Pads exist to disperse the force of a hit and not to look cool. Mouth guards exist to protect your teeth and oral cavity and not to juggle with during play. Coaches and parents need to ensure that each player is outfitted properly and understands the importance of the equipment.
Conditioning: Lacrosse is a bing bang, go go go sport. Conditioning is critical to ensure injury risk is minimized. The first time out don’t over work the kids and conversely, educate the kids on listening to their bodies.
Know and follow the rules: Contact happens in lacrosse, but under certain conditions. Follow these rules. Enforce these rules. Make sure the league you participate in respects these rules.
Rest throughout the season: Lacrosse seasons can be long, so it is vital that players understand downtime is necessary to allow their bodies to recover properly. As the adult it is up to you to teach the players this important lesson.
Handle injuries: These are kids playing the game and not professionals. There is no excuse for kids to play injured or tough it out. Easily an injury can compound itself and become much worse. Make sure your players understand the need to report their injuries and to seek treatment from an adult. The time they take caring for an injury will reduce the time it takes to get back into the game.
Lacrosse’s popularity will wane eventually, but until then it’s important for all parents to understand they play an important part in reducing injury rates.