The risks of intense athletic training in the young

Filed under: Teens, Health & Safety: Babies, Day Care & Education

If you have older children who are active in sports, they are likely returning to the athletic fields this month in preparation for fall sports. Often the practices are in the mid morning, late afternoons, or in some cases, children are required to attend bi-daily workouts to get ready for the fall season. For the most part it seems that coaches and school staffs are sensitive to the heat and the hydration needs of young kids. But as attentive as they may be, every year there are several cases of heat stroke and even death during these sessions. One such case just occurred in Milford, Michigan when a 16 year-old boy collapsed and died during a soccer camp. A cause of death has yet to be released in his case.

My 13 year-old plays on a competitive soccer team. August started with a soccer camp and followed with the twice weekly practices. Though his school does not start until September 5, his first soccer game will be in late August, with games continuing into early November. He loves the game and his coach is not the militant-win-at-all-costs kind of coach. But after an ankle injury in camp and some scary blisters from new cleats, I am wondering if it all isn't a bit much. He's just a kid and so much practicing seems to take its toll. What do you think? Too much sports? Too much pressure?

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.