Are you ready to leave those rainy days of spring behind and welcome summer and sunshine?

As the kids finish up school and begin their summer sports activities, it means a lot more time spent on the field, in the pool or around the track.

Summer is the time for physical activity

According to the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology, school-aged children between the ages of 5 and 11 should be getting less than two hours of “screen time” each day.

During the summer months, that leaves a lot of extra time to fill. A fun and healthy way to spend the time is by playing sports. Let’s prepare you and your child for an injury-free season.

What are the risks?

There are certain risks that present themselves in competitive sports. Here are a few to consider:

  • Proper technique and form – Every sport utilizes different muscle groups in varying ways. It’s always a good idea to check your child’s posture and practices while they are engaged in their sport. Coaches and trainers can help by providing feedback on your child’s progress.
  •  Musculoskeletal dysfunctions – The MSK system provides form, support and stability to our bodies. Dysfunctions can limit the body’s ability to move free and easy. This increases the risk for injury. Athletes should be checked regularly to ensure proper joint movement and bone alignment. Talk to us about how to keep your children playing the sports they love for many years to come.
  •  Missing or improper equipment – Helmets can save lives, but they need to be fitted and worn correctly. Special footwear improves performance and offers support, but is your child wearing the correct size? Sporting goods stores can assist if you’re having any trouble determining the correct fit.

Our Top 5 Tips for Sports Safety

We recommend these five simple steps to start your child on the road to a healthy and successful sporting season:

  1. Warm up and cool downMaximize your child’s exercise. Spend a few minutes doing light to moderate exercises before the game or practice. Your body should have a light sweat which lets you know you’re ready to roll! During cool down, remember to hold each stretch for about a minute. Hold steady and try not to bounce around.
  2.  Drink WaterWater is the athlete’s fuel. It helps keep the body’s joints lubricated and assists with shock absorption, which is particularly helpful for sports enthusiasts. Remember, you can add a lemon or berries to your child’s water for taste and to help them drink more.
  3.  Gear Up – The beginning of the season is a perfect chance to dust off the gear, inspect if for any wear or tear, and to double-check the fit.
  4.  Practice proper form and technique – Learn and follow safety rules and suggestions for your child’s particular sport. You’ll find some more sport-specific safety suggestions at the NIH website.
  5.  Rest – Energize your child by building a solid bedtime routine and follow it each day. The Encyclopedia of Early Childhood Development recommends creating a safe and secure sleeping environment where electronic devices are kept to a minimum or removed completely from the bedroom. Regularly scheduled sports massage is another tool for the rest and recovery process.

Chiropractors and Pediatric Care

We’ve covered some of the basics and outlined the importance of keeping sports safety top of mind. More and more we are realizing the benefits of being active, for our children and ourselves.

If active living is part of your family’s long-term vision, consider chiropractic and massage services as an integral component of your training plan.

If you are looking for a pediatric chiropractor, then our team has got your bases covered!