Spring is officially here, which also means that it’s time for spring sports. Athletes are ready to dust off the gloves, cleats, and helmets and get outside!
But before you hand your student athlete a lacrosse stick or a baseball bat, you should make sure that they’re aware of any health risks they may face.
Unfortunately, accidents are inevitable, but there are preventative measures you can take to reduce the risk of injuries. Here’s a guide to help you understand the most common injuries and how to prevent them.
What are the most common spring sports injuries?
- Shoulder/Elbow Injuries: From throwing and racquet sports such as baseball and tennis
- Knee/Ankle/Shin Injuries: From sports that involve a lot of running such as track, soccer, and lacrosse
- Concussions: Can happen from any sport and symptoms can include confusion, headache, blurry vision, fatigue, and upset stomach
What can I do to avoid common injuries?
- Get plenty of sleep: You can’t be fully engaged in the game without being fully energized. Get proper rest every night to make sure you’re not falling asleep out on the field.
- Avoid skipping meals: Playing a sport on an empty stomach can lead to fatigue that can cause fainting spells. Be sure to eat at least 3 meals a day, and have a pre-practice/game snack and refuel after the game.
- Stay hydrated: Not drinking enough water is also another recipe for a fainting spell. Be sure to stay hydrated throughout the game, especially during the warmer months.
- Stay physically fit: Before practice or a game, be sure to warm up and cool down with stretching exercises. It’s also a good idea to maintain some level of physical activity throughout the entire year. Diving straight into a sports season without conditioning your body to a heavy amount of physical activity can lead to injury.
- Have fun! – Sports should be enjoyable and not be a source of stress or injury. Being involved in a sport is a great way to build friendships, learn new skills, and get some exercise.
What happens if I get injured?
No one can fully prevent an accident, but taking the proper steps following and injury can prevent things from getting worse.
- Seek immediate medical evaluation: Visit an emergency care service for proper diagnosis and treatment.
- Take it easy: If you’ve faced a serious injury, physical therapy is not something to avoid. It’s important to make sure your body is fully recovered before you get back in the game safely.
At AFC Urgent Care, we want to make sure your student athlete is well taken care of by providing sports physicals 7 days a week as well as providing urgent care services for sports injuries that require x-rays, stitching, and more.
For more information about our sports physicals and what we treat, please call to speak with one of our medical professionals at 203-969-2000.