These simple FIFA-backed steps can significantly reduce injuries in your entire team.
So, your kid loves soccer. Indoors, outdoors, in the field, on the driveway: it’s a passion. And this is great. But what parents often don’t love about their kids playing soccer are all the possible injuries that come with it.
According to Stanford Children’s Health, about 1/3 of all injuries in childhood are sports-related. And soccer hosts a lot of them. Back in 2009, about 3.5 million of these injuries happened, resulting in 88,000 children and teens landing in emergency rooms for soccer-related incidents.
The most common injuries reported? Sprains and strains topped the list and the number of accidents is growing.
But you don’t need to worry: there’s a solution. (At least researchers from the University of Basel in Switzerland think so). And it’s simple.
In a study that involved 3,900 children from four European countries, it was found that stretching and doing a solid warm-up before play is what counts.
(This isn’t really news, if you talk to most athletes, however, it seems that many soccer coaches dealing with kids could be skipping it, resulting in the injuries).
In order to encourage great warm-ups everywhere, something called the 11 + Kids program was developed. Coaches can follow it online. It consists of drills, games, stretches, movements and exercises that help to prevent injury and build stronger soccer players with solid skills.
In fact, it’s so effective that after just one soccer season, teams that used it at least once a week had a 48% lower injury rate. And the rate of severe injury fell by a whopping 74%.
To find out more about the specialized program, click here.
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