The beginning of a new school year describes one thing: fall sports season is here. Let it be flag football or varsity track, sports activities are necessary for children’s health and well being, which keeps them both physically and mentally active. With kids spending nearly six hours in front of big screens every day and 17 percent of children and adolescents which now are characterized as obese; indulging in sports activities has become more important than anything. Unluckily, sports-related illnesses and injuries can anytime happen.
Here are some of the tips and advice that will help young children and young athletes healthy so that they are able to enjoy the advantages of sports participation for further years to come.
- Sun Protection: Athletes are prone more to skin cancer than non-athletes. For various outdoor activities, kids should not forget to wear sunscreen SPF 30 or higher, lightweight, light-colored clothing and a hat to keep the harsh rays away. Also, avoid chances of doing activity near midday because it is the time when the sun is at its harshest.
- Heat: There are some parts were temperature remains hot into the fall as well. Therefore, rest periods are necessary, maintain for young children, children who are beginners in athletics and children with medical conditions, like diabetes. Headaches, dizziness, weakness and chills might be some symptoms with respect to heat-related illness. At this time children should stop activity and should cool themselves under a shady tree, air-conditioned place and drink water. Yet, still if they don’t feel better within few minutes, then it is time to get medical care and consult a doctor.
- Hydration: Athletes require fluids before, during and after any sort of activity they perform. At the time of activity, kids should have a sip of drink at any free time they get. For long heavy sessions, sports drinks are ideal but most have high sugar content, so go for low-sugar or mix water with it. Children’s fluid demands may change, but the best route to judge is by checking their urine. If urine is pale yellow to clear, it shows that they are well-hydrated and is fit and fine.
- Nutrition: Just like a car needs high quality diesel for efficient running, athletes give their best when they consume high energy nutritious food. Have a whole food at the time of meals and snacks. Fresh fruits such as apples, grapes or oranges; vegetables like spinach, broccoli or cauliflower; whole grains like brown rice or whole-wheat bread can be consumed; beans; and lean meat and fish are one of the best sources of energy. Restrict yourself from fast food, packaged snacks like chips and cookies and avoid carbonated drinks.
- Safety Gear: Do the game you play require a mouth guard? Eye protection? A helmet? Special shoes? If yes, then make sure all the wearable gear fits properly and is not too old. Previous year’s gear can be too small for this fall. Make sure that running shoes should be changed every 300 to 500 miles and any bike helmet that has undergone a crash should be replaced.