Playing sports is a great option for kids, teens, and young adults who want to stay healthy and make friends. Whether it's a school sport, a local league, or just playing with friends on the weekend, sports are a great way to stay active, meet people with similar interests, and overall just have fun.
Unfortunately, as with any type of physical activity, there's always a chance of injury when playing sports. From pulled muscles and overuse injuries to sprains and concussions, there are a lot of injuries seen among young athletes.
Keep reading for our visual guide to the most common sports injuries in kids!
But the most common injury seen in young athletes? Ankle sprains. More than 50% of ankle sprains are seen in young adults between the ages of 10 and 24, with more than 325,000 occurring each year. With ankle sprains being the number one most common sports injury suffered by high school athletes, it's important for athletes, coaches, and parents to know how to prevent them from happening.
Luckily, there are four easy ways to prevent ankle sprains and other injuries. First, players should alway sit out of practice or games if they're feeling fatigue. A fatigued body is not up to handle it's usual amount of activity and can lead to injury. Second, athletes should always wear proper footwear. Wearing cleats, sneakers, or shoes that fit properly is one of the best ways to prevent an ankle sprain. Third, athletes should try to maintain a healthy weight for their age and height. If a person is overweight, they may be putting too much pressure on their ankles and legs, causing them to be more susceptible to injury. And lastly, young athletes should always be working on strengthening their muscles to keep them strong and less vulnerable to injury.
According to the Mayo Clinic, one of the best ways to prevent sprains and other sports injuries is to properly warm up and stretch. If players take the time to make sure their body is healthy and strong enough to handle the amount of activity they're doing, they'll be less susceptible to getting injured.
So with a little warming up, the right footwear, and staying healthy and in shape, young athletes can play their favorite sports with less of a chance of suffering an injury.