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Open Letter to Parents of Student Athletes

Open Letter to Parents of Student Athletes

by AthleticoLeave a Comment

There is a common saying that floats through the sports world, “It’s not IF you get hurt, it’s when and how bad.” Injuries are an inevitable part of playing sports.

As a parent, it’s extremely difficult to watch your student athlete get injured. To help put you at ease, we will be talking about when your child gets hurt, taking into consideration, how it happened and how it is being treated.

When Injuries Occur

Some injuries are unavoidable – kids will fall, run into each other and unfortunately accidents happen. Athletes take risks playing sports and injuries are one of them. If the injury happens during a game, you need to understand how it’s being assessed. It’s important to let medical professionals evaluate, diagnose or treat the injured athlete. It may be right on the field by an Athletic Trainer, team doctor, or EMT. The evaluation can happen later at an office or clinic. Athletico offers free assessments, where an Athletic Trainer, Physical or Occupational Therapist can evaluate the injured athlete.

Sports injuries may also occur from overtraining, muscle imbalance (from improper training/practice and movement) and compensations which can stem from your child keeping up with the demands of the sport. These injuries can be looked at by Athletico’s Athletic Trainers, Physical and Occupational Therapists and Fitness Specialists.

Some injuries may feel like they are repeatedly happening and not fully healing. If it doesn’t seem like it came from part of the game or accident, there may be something else going on. The injury could be something straightforward like an overuse injury. A common treatment for overuse injuries is rest until the pain goes away. When the athlete goes back to training, allowing no time for healing, re-injury can occur. It is recommended that the athlete’s mechanics be looked at, including how they are running, throwing, kicking, etc.

Some injuries may be related. For example, an athlete develops low back/hip pain. They rest, heal, play, re-injure, and repeat. A few weeks later the athlete sprains their ankle. It may be bad luck but is recommended to be looked at to determine if there are one or more underlining imbalances in the body that may be contributing to both the low back/hip pain and ankle sprain.

Non-contact injuries often come from imbalances in the body and may be created as a result of insufficient training. A Strength and Conditioning Coach, Athletic Trainer, Personal Trainer, or Fitness Coach can help in keeping young athletes ready for the rigors of sports.

How Injuries are Treated

A crucial question that parents should ask is how the injury is being treated. Athletico staff can help you find the right care for your child’s injury. In fact, in some instances your school’s Athletic Trainer may ask to come to the doctor’s appointment to support getting your student athlete back on the field.

If an athlete’s doctor or Athletic Trainer recommends Physical or Occupational Therapy, it’s great to be involved in the treatment process! Ask educated questions such as:

  • Are there any home exercises my child should be doing?
  • When they can, should they do some conditioning before returning to sport?
  • Is my child taking their physical/occupational therapy seriously?

Be sure to keep your child motivated throughout their therapy! Talk with the Athletic Trainers, Physical or Occupational Therapist, and Strength and Conditioning Coaches about how to prevent this injury from happening again. They are experts and have a wealth of knowledge working with athletes that may have experienced similar injuries. The mental and emotional impact of injuries can also be challenging for student athletes, especially injuries that need surgery. Regaining the confidence so their body is ready to return to play can be difficult for a young athlete. It’s important to keep a strong support system around them including parents, trainers, physical or occupational therapists, and coaches that will help them to return to play!.

A quote I often use with my youth athletes and my own boys is, “It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up.” – Vince Lombardi

If your student athlete is experiencing a nagging pain or a injury, request a free assessment with one of our experts. Assessments are available both safely in-clinic and virtually through our telehealth platform.

Request a Free Assessment

The Athletico blog is an educational resource written by Athletico employees. Athletico bloggers are licensed professionals who abide by the code of ethics outlined by their respective professional associations. The content published in blog posts represents the opinion of the individual author based on their expertise and experience. The content provided in this blog is for informational purposes only, does not constitute medical advice and should not be relied on for making personal health decisions.

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