Soccer player outside on the field

Feb 24, 2021 / Sports Medicine

Top Tips for Coaches

In youth sports, there are many actions that can help keep young and growing athletes on the field. Nurse practitioner Stephanie de Jager, M.S.N., CPNP, says, “Many of the injuries we see in our clinic are preventable.” She encourages coaches and parents to learn about the risks of individual sports and training in general to keep athletes off the bench.

Here are five tips from our team. Please share these with others to keep your young athletes and others safe.

Many injuries can be prevented. 
Rules and proper equipment are designed to prevent injuries that involve another player or the environment. “Noncontact” injuries can be reduced with appropriate warm-up and using proper form in fundamental and sport-specific movements. Download the FIFA 11+ Manual an official publication of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) to learn more.

Athletes should not have pain during or after activity. 
When a young athlete complains of pain related to activity, please advise them to seek a medical evaluation. Responding to complaints of pain early can reduce missed playing time.

Concussions are not old news. 
Recognizing signs and symptoms of a concussion and immediately removing an athlete from play is the responsibility of everyone. Four in ten athletes return too soon and this can cause recovery to be delayed.

Varying sports can improve performance and prevent injuries. 
Studies of collegiate and professional athletes show that athletes who play more than one sport through high school will perform better, have less injuries and are less likely to experience “burnout” and stop playing sports altogether.

Encourage good nutrition, hydration and sleep habits. 
Teach young athletes to take care of their bodies. They should learn early how to properly fuel, hydrate and rest. Visit our sports nutrition page to learn more.

Download a PDF to share.

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