Never assume pain and injury is normal for your child when playing sport. Some children can be very active during the day, then combine this with a busy sporting schedule, it can add up to a very high amount of time spent on growing and developing feet.
Fortunately, there are some simple steps to help reduce injury occurrence:
Make sure your child’s shoe fits correctly, including length and width of the shoe
Make sure the shoe is right for your child’s foot
Does your child’s foot roll in or out? These are important considerations to know how controlling the features of the shoe need to be
Make sure the shoe is appropriate to the sport they are playing
It may sound simple but a regular running shoe for netball will increase the likelihood of ankle sprains and skin irritation issues like blisters and calluses
Regularly replace the shoe if worn
Doing this will allow the most stable surface for your child’s foot to play on. If the shoe is worn unevenly it will create excessive movement in their feet and legs leading to tired and painful muscles.
Other things to consider:
- Identify abnormal leg and foot positions
If your child’s knees are pointing inwards or outwards this can create abnormal pressures on the foot.
If your child’s feet are high arched or flat footed this can increase stress to the ankle joint or shins.
- Surfaces they are playing on
Sport that is played on soft sand or grass can lead to excess muscle activity due to the ground being unstable. This can lead to tired and painful muscles. Hard concrete or compacted courts provide minimal shock absorption which can lead to tired and painful joints.
- Amount of activity
Finally, consider the amount of activity they are undertaking, this is very important when the exercise is repetitive; for example, running. Think about spacing out the trainings over the week or incorporating fun exercises that let their bodies relax.
If you would like further advice or help in treating or preventing your child’s sporting injuries,
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