When most people think of school sports injuries, they imagine the injuries that could affect the highs school quarterback. According to a new study published in the Journal of Pediatrics, however, cheerleaders have an even higher risk of serious injuries, including head injuries such as concussions. According to the study, cheerleaders are at a greater risk of permanent injury or serious injury that results in long-term care or a shorter life expectancy.
Why are so many cheerleaders at risk of sports injury in Homestead and other cities? According to some experts, part of the reason is because cheerleading is very competitive and some students try to progress too quickly – before they have a strong technical foundation for more elaborate and risky moves. Cheerleaders also take part in risky maneuvers – such as climbing to heights or being thrown in the air. These types of activities can lead to head injuries in Homestead and other communities.
Some schools have started to pass rules intended to limit these types of injuries in children and minors. In Homestead and other communities, some schools have passed ruled which prevents cheerleaders from tumbling on the ground or being thrown to considerable heights. Other schools have hired more experienced coaches or have created a system for teaching cheerleading gradually. Others have rules which require more people to assist when new routines are taught.
However, according to the latest study, more needs to be done. According to the research published in the Journal of Pediatrics, 66% of student sports-related concussions come from cheerleading. Moreover, over 33% of cheerleaders who suffer a concussion do not report the injury – often because they are not aware of symptoms.
Parents can reduce the risk of injury in this sport by hiring good coaches or trainers to teach proper technique. According to some experts, starting cheerleading training at age ten or younger ensures that an athlete has the basic foundation for the more competitive routines by high school age. In cases where a fall occurs on the field or in practice, it is important for the athlete to be checked over by a doctor. If a soft tissue injury or head injury has occurred, it is important to get a medical evaluation and treatment. The student should not return to sports or other at-risk activities until a doctor has given clearance to return; returning to sports too soon after a brain injury increases the risk of a serious secondary injury. Practicing on foam floors or soft surfaces can also help reduce the risk of injury.
Nevertheless, even with precautions, cheerleaders still risk head injury, muscle tears, fractures, and other injuries as a result of the sport. Parents can help by ensuring that cheerleading coaches at school or after-school programs are not only experienced cheerleaders but have also passed safety training specifically to be a coach. Parents can further teach their children the warning signs of concussion so that athletes can recognize and report any problems.
Has your child suffered a serious injury at school or as part of an after-school program? Contact Flaxman Law Group today to arrange a free consultation to discuss your options.