Football is a very popular sport here in the United States. With the many great things that come from playing a team sport, such as teamwork and leadership, there is also a high risk for injuries as well. Fortunately, football leagues and government agencies are taking steps to ensure that football players are as well protected as possible. Here are some common injuries that can occur from playing contact sports such as football and how new technology can help mitigate damage.
Experts have long known that concussions are common in football, and as players advance from pop warner, to high school to college the probability of suffering from a concussion increases, as players are stronger and more physical. Unfortunately, research is showing that concussions are more serious than previously thought, and many are now viewing concussions as extremely dangerous. In addition to causing depression and other symptoms such as nausea and confusion, concussions can also cause hearing loss; many people who have suffered from multiple concussions such as retired NFL players have looked to use hearing aids to help increase overall hearing levels. A few thing parents can do to help prevent concussions are:
- Make sure your child has all the necessary equipment needed to participate in each sport
- Make sure helmets are worn at all times while playing and that they fit properly
- Coaches and parents should educate their children on the proper techniques and skills of the game, specifically in the case of concussions, hitting.
- If you think your child has suffered from a concussion, seek immediate care and make sure to let your child return back to competition before fully healing
Knee injuries are very common in football, and many other sports. The ACL is a ligament in the knee that is very important while playing sports. The ACL aids the knee and body while running, jumping, cutting and landing. Without the ACL, playing sports, although possible to play without one, becomes very difficult. A few things that athletes of all ages can do to help prevent against ACL tears are:
- Do agility and core training drills; to work on balance and stability
- Make sure to properly warm up and stretch prior to physical activity
- If old enough and cleared by a doctor, children can participate in strength and conditioning programs again with main focus on the core and lower body, as well as training the upper body.
Heat Related Injuries
Perhaps the greatest threat posed to young football players is heat-related injuries. Only 15 years ago, these injuries were not taken seriously. However, the death of NFL football player Korey Stringer and several college football players led to strong action being taken. Football players amongst other athletes are now encouraged to drink water throughout practice, and medical experts who know the early signs of heat-related injuries are often present. Fortunately, simple steps have gone a long way toward preventing heat-related problems that were common in the past.
While football is a physical sport, it does not have to be significantly more dangerous than other sports. Injuries can never be fully prevented, but experts are taking steps to help reduce the frequency of the most serious injuries. Fortunately, technology is providing a number of opportunities for making football safer for participants on all levels.
Hi my name is John O’Connor, I am a father, outdoorsman, sports enthusiast and passionate about living a healthy lifestyle. Check out my new blog at bloggingwjohno.blogspot.com!