Preventive measures to avoid infantile sports injuries

An international study states that the 56% of anterior cruciate ligament injuries in children it originates during sports. Therefore, physiotherapists advise a dosed training and directed and correct hydration and nutrition. In addition, Spanish physiotherapists recommend avoiding sports specialization at early ages and educating children in the early detection of injury symptoms.

An analysis published in the British Journal of Sports Medicineaffirms that 56.6% of anterior cruciate ligament injuries (ACL) of the knee between the ages of 5 and 14 originate in sports practice. Of them, the majority is due to sports with the ball. At the same time, the Spanish Association of Physiotherapists (AEF) is warning of the increase in sports injuries in children and insist on the importance of educating in their prevention.


In addition, the analysis shows that hospital interventions for this anterior cruciate ligament are increasing in recent years. The president of the AEF, Fernando Ramos, affirms in this sense that "in sports of contact they emphasize by their frequency and seriousness the traumatic injuries like the sprains, muscular breaks or fractures".

Causes of childhood sports injuries

Spanish physiotherapists point out the early age of athletes as one of the main causes of trauma. "In children under 8, basic motor skills and efficient motor responses have not yet been developed, while prepubertal children suffer changes in bone growth that can lead to musculotendinous pathologies," Ramos said. At the same time, the AEF highlights that both the time of exposure to physical activity and the different level of development of the players themselves are factors directly related to the risk of suffering an injury, whose main symptoms are pain, inflammation and impotence. functional.


The seriousness of the musculoskeletal conditions due to trauma or overexertion can have serious consequences for the health of children. According to the aforementioned scientific report, ACL injuries can generate inability to practice physical exercise, which can lead to greater chances of suffering from childhood obesity. In addition, the president of the AEF notes that "in the most serious cases may arise joint instabilities, alterations in the growth of the bones by the involvement of the conjunction cartilages or delays in the healing process that can prolong the symptoms."

Preventive measures to avoid sports injuries

One of the objectives of the Copa COVAP and the Spanish Association of Physiotherapists is to jointly promote the adoption of measures to prevent sports injuries in minors. Thus, the AEF has emphasized the need, in the words of its president, to "educate in the identification of the signs of an injury so that it can be treated in its initial phases". In their recovery, they insist, it is key the work of the physiotherapists through the intervention of the same with directed therapeutic exercise.


At the same time, physiotherapists advise avoiding sport specialization at early ages due to repetitive movements and decompensation of the muscular work involved, and invite to practice several disciplines simultaneously for the acquisition of extensive motor coordination skills. Experts also insist on the adoption of protective measures and advise to go to a specialized consultation if the pain persists for a week.

"Other complementary ways to avoid Child injuries during physical activity they are to subject the minors to a dosed and directed training, to favor their hydration correctly before and after each session and, although it does not serve to prevent, adopt a good diet that facilitates the recovery after each effort ", adds Fernando Ramos.

In this way, both the Copa COVAP and the AEF recommend adopting a diet rich in omega 3 fatty acids, which reduce the inflammatory processes typical of an injury. In relation to this point, Rafael Guerrero, commercial director of COVAP, has concluded that "what we intend in the educational campaign of the Copa COVAP, which has already reached more than 13,500 Andalusian children, is precisely to show the children already their relatives that healthy eating is related to all areas of health and sports. "

Sonia Sánchez. COVAP Cup Advisor

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