At Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center, we like to see young patients being physically active and staying in shape. Playing a fall sport is a great way to do this. However, we also want to see them keeping their feet and ankles safe. Fortunately, as a parent, there is much you can do to help ensure a safe fall sports season. See the do’s and don’ts below for protecting the podiatric health of young athletes.
Do: start the season with new shoes. Sports shoes have a lifespan. Most children outgrow their shoes from season to season. Don’t be tempted to save money by using hand-me-down shoes. Shoes conform to the feet of the person wearing them and can cause discomfort to another wearer. Get your child’s feet professionally measured and buy shoes designed specifically for the sport he or she is playing.
Don’t: assume old injuries are fully healed. It’s best to get them rechecked by our podiatrists, Dr. Victoria M. Foley or Dr. Constance Ornelas who will evaluate the condition of your child’s foot or ankle. It may be that a brace, orthotic device or other measures will be recommended to reduce the risk of reinjury.
Do: speak up if you notice field or court conditions are not up to snuff. Divots, loose pavement and holes or severe dips in terrain can lead to ankles sprains or fall injuries.
Do: attend a few practices and see that warm up and stretching is part of the practice routine. The best way to increase stamina and strength without injury is to gradually make workouts more strenuous and of longer duration.
Don’t: allow your child to continue to play if it’s obvious that they’ve sustained an injury. Better to sit out the rest of the game than the rest of the season. If an injury happens, use the RICE regimen (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation) until you can get into our Long Beach office in Douglas Park, CA. Call us for an appointment at (562) 420-9800.