SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – If your student wants to play football and basketball, or softball and tennis, a new study shows you should let them and coaches agree.
“Certain sports kind of target certain areas of your body, but I always encourage my kid to play multiple sports because one sport is like an advocate to another,” Bakari Bryant, a Jenkins High School and parent, said. “It prepares you for the next sport.”
You may think having your child play one sport will save them from injuries or increase chances of an elite status, but a new study shows that’s not the case.
In fact, they said specializing in one sport may lead to more knee, ankle and leg injuries in high school athletes.
“You want to make sure that the kids are fully equipped,” Bryant said. “You don’t want anything happen that’s not supposed to happen.”
That’s why getting them checked out before stepping on the court track or field is crucial.
Bryant is the head basketball coach at Jenkins High School, but he’s a father first and knows how important it is that his son along with his athletes is taken care of.
“Make sure that he’s hydrated, that he’s getting the proper sleep and make sure that he’s eating healthy, but that’s the hardest thing,” Bryant said. “Our kids want to run to some fast food restaurants and they want to eat this and that you know, but like they say what you put in your body is what you get out.”
And don’t take it lightly if your athlete complains of a tight chest or headache at any point.
“You know you have kids that go unknown about heart injuries or any heart problems and those things,” Bryant said. “You can miss those things if you don’t get it checked up properly. When he exercise I kind of believe he’s out of shape, but when he exercise he says his chest was tight so you have those areas to get checked and you want to be careful when a kid tell you that my chest is hurting. you know, you want to be mindful because like I say you don’t want anything to happen to a child.”
And just a heads up, researchers find athletes who play more than 60 games per year have an 85% higher risk of lower body injury. The most likely to get injured are basketball, football and soccer players.