Sports Safety

All sports have a risk of injury. In general, the more contact in a sport, the greater the risk of injury. Most injuries occur to ligaments, tendons and muscles. Only about 5 percent of sports injuries involve broken bones. However, the areas where bones grow in children are at more risk of injury during the rapid growth phase of puberty. The most frequent sports injuries are sprains (injuries to ligaments) and strains (injuries to muscles), caused when too much stress is placed on tendons, joints, bones and muscle. As always, call Dr. Mengers' office if you have additional questions or concerns.

All sports have a risk of injury. In general, the more contact in a sport, the greater the risk of injury. Most injuries occur to ligaments, tendons and muscles. Only about 5 percent of sports injuries involve broken bones. However, the areas where bones grow in children are at more risk of injury during the rapid growth phase of puberty. The most frequent sports injuries are sprains (injuries to ligaments) and strains (injuries to muscles), caused when too much stress is placed on tendons, joints, bones and muscle. As always, call Dr. Mengers' office if you have additional questions or concerns.

To Reduce Injury:
Wear the right gear. Players should wear appropriate protective equipment such as pads (neck, shoulder, elbow, wrist, chest, knee, shin), helmets, mouthpieces, face guards, wrist guards, protective cups, and/or eyewear.

Increase flexibility. Stretching exercises before and after games can increase flexibility.

Strengthen muscles. Conditioning exercises during practice and before games strengthens muscles used in play.

Use the proper technique. This should be reinforced during the playing season.

Take breaks. Rest periods during practice and games can reduce injuries.

Play safe. Strict rules against headfirst sliding (baseball and softball), spearing (football), and body checking (ice hockey) should be enforced.

Stop the activity if there is pain.

Avoid heat injury by drinking plenty of fluids before, during and after exercise or play; decrease or stop practices or competitions during high heat/humidity periods; wear light clothing.

Sports Related links:
Sports Shorts
Promoting Physical Activity
Overweight and Obesity Information
What is a Sports Medicine Specialist?

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Contact Us

Smita Parikh Mengers, MD, FAAP

301-540-7496
19803 Executive Park Cr. Germantown, MD 20874-2649