Quotes from story by Stephanie Cary, San Gabriel Valley Tribune
“…despite the obvious benefits, competitive sports have innate risks. There are safety issues parents need to consider.”
Risk #1: INCOMPLETE PHYSICAL EXAMS
“Passing a physical exam is a requirement for student-athletes, though most often those physicals do not include an electrocardiogram (EKG), which is used to detect an abnormal heartbeat.
“Dr. Genesa Wagoner at Providence Little Company of Mary San Pedro says all athletes should talk to their doctors about having an EKG performed.”
The cost associated with this procedure could keep many parents from getting their child tested.
For more information about the EKG click here.
Risk #2: OVERUSE INJURIES
“Another risk…. is injury caused by overuse of certain parts of the body.
“Eli Hallak, regional committee charman for the Far West Athletic Trainers’ Association’s Secondary School Committee, says high school athletes nowadays are often on multiple teams for a single sport, which leads to it being a year-round activity.
“‘…20 years ago (student-athletes) would go from softball or baseball into another sport like soccer or basketball or cross-country and give their body a rest,’ Hallak said.
“Wagoner says it is fine for children to play more than one sport at any given time…. because it improves their muscles in different areas of the body while increasing their conditioning and core strength without the risk of an overuse injury.”
Today’s athletes increasingly specialize in one sport. Particularly in softball, this does stress the shoulder.
I know it’s not popular, but I would like to see pitch-counts and limited-innings for softball pitchers. This is now being done in little league baseball due to shoulder and elbow injuries.
Read more about the risks of playing softball by clicking here.