How to Prevent Sports-Related Injuries in Flag Football
“Exercise is king. Nutrition is queen. Put them together and you’ve got a kingdom.” -Jack Lalanne
Flag football was without question designed to be a safe alternative to traditional football. The increase in related sports injuries along with violent tackles in traditional football has created a strong appeal for flag football. Although strides in flag football have been made to keep youth athletes safer on the field, the risks of sports-related injuries still exist. The focus of tackling has shifted to speed and maneuverability, and thus collisions and falls are still possible. By taking preventative measures against sport-related injuries, however, we can continuously decrease the likelihood of injury amongst our athletes.
HEALTHY LIFESTYLE PRACTICES: Rest is critical when your child utilizes a great deal off energy. Ensuring that your child has an optimal amount of sleep will prevent your child’s body from being overworked, thus preventing the likelihood of injury. Encourage your athlete to listen to their bodies. When rest is needed, encourage them to rest! Hydration and a proper diet is also one of the most essential practices in preventing a young athlete from experiencing injury. When an athlete is dehydrated, he/she is more prone to injuries such as muscle strains or ailments such as nausea or vomiting, all of which can impact performance. Pumping your athlete with fluids will not only keep them moving, but will also protect them from possible injuries! Being conscious of the ingredients that your child consumes can also protect their developing bodies! Removing the additives and unnecessary sugars and instead replacing them with proper vitamins and nutrients will help to promote a strong and durable physique. Young athletes burn a lot of fuel throughout their active days, and as their bodies continue to develop, proper nutrition and rest is essential.
EDUCATION: One of the biggest tools against sports-related injuries is proper education. The coaches with Play Fanatics continuously bolster an awareness in sport-related injury prevention. We encourage our athletes to voice when they are experiencing bodily pain, and therefore, we are able to decrease the worsening of a minor injury. We encourage our athletes to not play through pain, as safety is a top priority. Furthermore, flag football has removed the practice of violent collisions, however, that does not eradicate the likelihood of falls. Educating and enforcing our athletes to fall properly will also decrease the likelihood of rolled ankles, broken bones, and even more severally, head or neck injuries. We inspire our athletes to listen to their bodies, which will properly serve them throughout their athletic journey.
KEEP’EM ACTIVE: Encouraging your young athlete to remain active during off season is also instrumental in preventing sports related injuries. This practice can include light workouts, outdoor play or an involvement in an alternative sport. Continuous physical activity will keep their muscles in shape and healthy for in-season activity!
“The mind is the master. And the body is the servant.” -Steve Cotter