Help Your Child Avoid Soccer Injuries

Spring is here in Chicago and for many parents that means soccer season! Soccer is a great sport, building individual skills and teamwork as well as giving participants a good cardiovascular workout.

To make this a winning season for your child, make sure that you do all you can to prevent injuries. The constant running and change of body position while wearing the required cleats mean more risk of ankle sprains, foot injuries and lower leg fractures.

Equip Your Child with Well-Fitting Cleats

Cleats might help your child grip the field and improve traction, but they really are only a thin sole with spikes attached. There is little ankle support and, in fact, many injuries are caused by cleats that don’t fit well.

Never use hand-me-down cleats. Cleats as in all other types of footwear will mold to the prior owner’s foot shape and gait style. Also don’t fit the cleats tightly to minimize foot shifting as this adds too much pressure on the toes. In soccer the toes bear a significant load and tight shoes will only exacerbate painful toe and fore-foot problems.

Check and recheck for size even during the season – children (as you know) are always growing! Buy new cleats to ensure a proper fit and prevent injuries related to tight shoes.

Common Soccer Injuries

Since children’s bodies are still developing into their teen years, it’s unwise to let them continue to play sports when injured. Always take action if your child complains of pain or if you observe actions that may indicate pain.

Stavros O. Alexopoulos, DPM diagnoses and treats children’s sports injuries every day. The most common soccer injuries we see at our office are:

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