We all know that children need to be physically active in order to remain healthy. In this modern times, when sedentary life is practically mandatory for most people, coupled with unhealthy food options, it may seem pretty difficult to ensure your children get enough physical activity.
Even if you manage to get your kids active and excited about exercising or sports, there is another looming question that you need to consider – how safe are your children while doing sports.
We reached out to experts on children’s physical activity at Uptown Jungle in Murrieta to tell us more about safety concerns and how to address them.
Safety of the Environment
One of the most important aspects of the safety of children during strenuous physical activity is where they are doing it. If your neighborhood has a nice playground specifically designed for children to climb around, run, and jump, chances are that it comes with some safety features such as rubbery floor tiles. These can protect your child from fall injuries from as high as 8 feet, which is great.
On the other hand, if your child is playing outdoors in an environment that is not designed for child play, you may need to keep a closer look and instruct your child what they should and shouldn’t do due to safety.
Children practicing sports in a registered sports club will most likely be given some personal protective equipment, or you may be instructed to buy them some. Depending on the sport and the activity, these can include helmets, gloves or mittens, shoulder or knee pads and more.
Make sure that your child has those on every time they are practicing their sport of choice. Even if your child is not a part of a sports club, safety equipment is recommended. Rollerblading or cycling are the prime example of activities where not everyone wears safety equipment, but which are much safer if you do.
Safety of Activities
In order to ensure that your children’s physical activities are safe, you really need to pay attention to what they are doing. If your child has never done an activity, such as a cartwheel or climbing the monkey bars, make sure that they have supervision.
Ideally, your children should be supervised by a trained professional, but even being supervised by a responsible adult, like a parent, should be enough. If anything happens, you should be able to help them and assess if any further action is needed.
A Few More Tips
When it comes to your child’s safety, even at play, any tip should be welcome. Professionals recommend not focusing on a single sport of physical activity at an early age. The risk of repetitive strain injury is high and your child needs a variety of physical activities in order to develop properly.
Keep in mind that your children can easily forget that they need to drink enough water while at play. You should be the one to monitor their water intake and remind them to drink regularly. The same thing applies to safety from the sun. If you’re playing outdoors, make sure they wear sunscreen and a hat, especially in summer.
It’s easy for children to just run and start a strenuous physical activity without warmup – they don’t think about such things when there’s an opportunity to play. However, you should help them consider this important step. Thankfully, a few minutes of stretching should be enough for their young bodies to be ready for some serious fun and play.
We all want to keep our children safe and sound, no matter where they are and what they are doing – even if they are just playing sports. Follow these steps, and you will certainly minimize the likelihood of your child getting injured.