Spring is here, even if the weather isn’t exactly cooperating. The spring sport season can be a great way to finish off the school year, unless you end up sidelined with a foot or ankle injury. Below, we share four tips for making sure your feet and ankles stay healthy heading into the spring sports season.
Protecting Your Feet For Spring Sports
Here are four tips for protecting your feet while you gear up for and participate in spring sporting activities.
1. Preseason Checkup – Before the season begins, consider having your child get a preseason checkup or physical. In fact, it may be required for their participation in sports. If your child has been dealing with lingering foot or ankle issues, this is a good time to bring them up to the doctor so they can learn some in-season treatment techniques.
2. Check The Footwear – If your teen is like most kids their age, they went through a bit of a growth spurt over the winter. Not only did they get taller, but their feet also got bigger. Last year’s cleats may be too tight, so always have them try on their footwear well before the first practice. Even if the shoe fits, if it is ragged, has holes or simply feels flimsy, consider investing in a more durable or supportive option before the season. If you’re going to get new shoes, it’s a good idea to try and slowly break them in before they need to wear them for long stretches during tryouts, practices and games.
3. Take It Slow – Even if you played a different sport during the winter, you’re going to want to ease back into your activity for your spring sport. Going too hard too quickly is a recipe for acute or overstress injuries. Build up your strength and conditioning slowly as you get back to the right fitness level. Remember, the season is a marathon, not a sprint. Don’t jeopardize your season because you went too hard out of the gates. That being said, do make it a priority to begin working your activity levels up leading up to spring practices so your body is ready for the task at hand.
4. Take Injuries Seriously – Finally, make sure that your child understands the importance of letting injuries heal. Rest is one of the best ways to treat overstress injuries, so make sure your child isn’t trying to push through the pain when a little rest and relaxation is what they need. Missing a game or a practice is worth it if it means you’re much healthier and pain-free in the future. Let your child know that they shouldn’t try to hide injuries or push through serious pain, because it’s just not worth it.