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Encouraging Heroes. You can be one too.

When kids get engaged with sports of any kind, there is a high likelihood that they will experience an injury at some point in time. Helping them to recover as quickly as possible requires having the right approaches under your belt that have been proven to bring them back to full strength as fast as possible. The following tips for aiding their young bodies in recovery will get them back out on the field safely as soon as possible.

Healing Takes Time
The number one reason for extended periods of healing for injuries and causing further damage is getting back onto the field or over-exerting oneself before healing has actually occurred. The body naturally heals itself when it is given the time and conditions that are necessary to do so. Many children will also insist on exercising or staying in shape despite the fact that they have an injury. Check with doctors and physicians to ensure that they are carrying out a safe routine that will not worsen their condition. Also, take advantage of all medical equipment that will support injuries as they heal such as therapeutic knee braces. These devices allow for mobility to be retained while also providing the needed support for ailing tissue.

Restore Range of Motion
Following injuries, it is often necessary to engage in physical therapy or exercises that allow the injured area to function completely normally once more. Failing to follow instructions or do the routines prescribed by doctors and physical therapists may result in the loss of range of motion that can potentially be permanent. It is important to train muscles and other tissues as they heal to extend as far as possible. Otherwise, healing may actually restrict future physical activities.

Rebuild Muscle
Muscles and other tissues must normally rest as healing takes place. While resting, they invariably lose a considerable amount of strength that they once possessed. Exercise and targeted weight training should be carried out once the healing has progressed to the point that these activities are safe once more. These exercises typically involve repetitions with weights that start out very light and progress to more challenging levels as the muscle regains its former strength.

Endurance Equals Success
Most injuries will call for a considerable period of rest for most children. During the down time, their endurance levels are typically reduced, requiring them to engage in some training in order to be back in action at full capacity. For children, building up their endurance once more is not a monumental task. Activities such as running, biking, swimming, and other low-impact exercises will usually do the job well. Recovering athletes should engage in activities such as these at least three times a week for an average of 30 minutes.

Confidence Counts
Children tend to lose their self-confidence more easily than adults and seasoned athletes after experiencing an injury. It is often necessary for kids to deal with the psychological ramifications of injury after being forced to retire from sports for an extended period of time. Spending time talking with coaches, family members, and teammates prior to making a full return can be helpful in fighting off this probability.

Kids rarely have the necessary discipline to properly care for themselves and heal after experiencing a sports injury, making it critical for parents and coaches to understand some of the keys things required for young athletes to make a full recovery. They must share this knowledge and provide support on all levels when it comes to keeping kids healthy and safe while playing sports.

Earnest Parenting: help for parents of athletes.