As the temperatures rise in the spring, kids all across the country will be taking to the baseball and softball fields. It won’t be long before parks are filled with the sounds of cracking bats and cheering parents. There is a lot of fun to be had playing in these sports, but parents should also be aware that there is a big risk for head and neck injuries. A little precaution will go a long way towards protecting your children. These three safety tips should always be followed when the kids are engaged in playing sports
Recommend Exercising All Year Long
Every parent who has a child enrolled in sports wants them to succeed and get the most out of the experience. It will help if you keep an eye on those goals throughout the year. Keeping kids active through daily exercises can actually help minimize the big risk for head and neck injuries when they starting playing. Short daily jogs and other muscle conditioning will fortify their bodies. There can be too much working out though, and that can cause muscle strain.
It is also vital to get into the habit of stretching and warming up before practice or a game. This means arriving early to allow for enough time for the warm-up.
Always Make Sure They're Wearing a Helmet
As mentioned, there is a big risk for head and neck injuries when playing baseball, and the “hot zone” for that risk is up at bat. If your child is 10 or under, it's going to be even more imperative to make sure they're wearing proper helmets, as kids’ heads can be susceptible to more damage than adults. They should be wearing a helmet any time they step up to the plate whether that is during a game, an official practice or playing with the family.
Don’t Forget the Sunscreen
Even though there is a big risk for head and neck injuries while playing sports, you also can’t forget about the risk of possible skin damage from exposure to the sun. A baseball hat can only go so far to protect a child while they’re standing out in the middle of a field. You want to make sure they have a decent layer of sunscreen on their arms, neck and face at all times. There are many sunscreens designed for kids and sports that can last for the duration of the game. It’s a good idea to apply the sunscreen before leaving for the park.
All of this discussion about the big risk for head and neck injuries shouldn’t dissuade you from signing your kids up for baseball or softball. Being proactive with safety measures can go a long way towards an injury-free season. Play ball!