By Myah Simms
Brien Mcmahon is composed of about 1800 students, out of these 1800, a good percentage of them are athletes who play a contact sport.
In high school, being on a sports team is a great way to make friends, add an extracurricular activity to your college resume, and build self confidence. The downside to sports are of course the injuries that follow them. Football, one of the most popular - but also one of the most intense - sports, is known for it's fatal and sometimes deadly injuries towards the head and heart. Joe Madaffari, gym teacher and athletic director at Brien Mcmahon, states that, “All of the coaches at Brien Mcmahon are fully certified to train all athletes in the safest way possible, however the athlete must practice safe playing tips to lower the risk of an injury.”
Every year, 1.35 million children between the ages of 4-19 are reported to have sports related injuries. However, these injuries are not your typical bumps and bruises from a game of catch in your backyard. They are usually serious enough to send the child to the hospital. Every 3 minutes a child was checked into an emergency room due to a sports related injury.
According to a study done by the American Academy of Pediatrics, they say the best ways to stay safe and injury free are by:
Planning your seasons - give your body time to rest
Wearing the correct equipment - check the requirements for your specific sport
Play safe - don’t only only worry about yourself, but your teammates as well.
Stay stretched and hydrated - before, during, and after practice/games
By planning your season out correctly, you’re allowing your body to have time to recollect and rest. Overworking your body can result in unwanted stress. Wearing proper equipment and playing safe are important because it lowers the chance of you or your teammates having a serious injury. Lastly, staying stretched and hydrated prevents pulls and tears in all of your main muscles and tendons. “My coach taught me the importance of stretching before practice,” says Eric Day (‘17), “I notice a change in my body when I stretch before a practice versus when I don’t, it really loosens my body up and allows me to be a better player on the court.”
Sports always have and always will be something done by billions of people all around the world. They are enjoyed by people of all ages, who share the common goal of wanting to win. With the technology we have today, hopefully there will be a way to ensure full safety while playing sports, but until then practice the tips listed above until they become a habit.
Injuries are never fun, but they do build character and allow you to analyze how you can play the game better. It's not about the amount of times you fall down, but the amount of times you get up. Your safety is your number one priority, but remember that all sports will have their occasional bumps and bruises - it comes with the game.