Most Common Injuries
Broken fingers, sprained or strained wrists, knees, and ankles
Ask the coach to evaluate your child to see if he's mastered the basic skills (dribbling, passing, and catching properly) before playing in a game. Invest in well-fitting, high-quality, high-top sneakers, and have your child wear ankle braces or tape his ankles and perform ankle-strengthening exercises if he's had a previous ankle injury. See if the coach conducts warm-up exercises and teaches kids to plant their feet and pivot before playing games; these steps can decrease the risk of many injuries to the lower extremities.
Often-Overlooked Safety Move
It's important that your child has a chance to warm up before playing. "Sometimes children arrive right at game time," Dr. Landry notes. "A child needs 10 to 15 minutes to warm up the muscles and ease into play."