Sports Safety

Sports Safety

Sports Safety

Definition: Sporting activities can improve both the physical and mental health of children, teaching them to work with other children and improving their coordination and confidence. Safety precautions and equipment can be instrumental in preventing or lessening injuries from sporting activities. The environment in which sports are played also has an impact on injury risks. Organized sports take place at schools, public parks, or recreation centers. More casual sports activities take place in backyards, streets, or neighborhood courts.

Magnitude of the Problem: According to Safe Kids:

  • Each year, over 38 million children and adolescents participate in some sports in the U.S.
  • Over 3.5 million children under the age of fifteen receive medical treatment due to sports injuries.
  • 62% of injuries from organized sports occur during practice, not games. According to a national survey, 27% of parents don’t always take the same safety precautions during practice as in games.
  • The most common cause of sports-related death is traumatic brain injury; sports and recreation account for one out of five TBIs in children.
  • Sprains (usually ankle) are the most common sports-related injury in children.

Prevention: The environment children play in (e.g., heat, protective ground surface, properly maintained equipment); proper safety equipment (e.g., helmets, padding); supervision; physical check-ups; and regular hydration are just a few of the factors that should be considered to prevent injuries to children while they are playing sports. In addition, assuring that children are in age- and ability-appropriate activities can help prevent stress-related mental health issues.

Traumatic Brain Injury among Children and Youth: Understanding TBI and One Model State Program

Reports of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) among adults, particularly in professional sports, are often in the news. But what about TBIs among children and youth? In 2012, an estimated 329,290 children (age 19 or younger) were treated in emergency departments (EDs) for sports and recreation-related injuries that included a diagnosis of concussion or TBI. From 2001 to 2012, the rate of ED visits for sports and recreation-related injuries with a diagnosis of concussion or TBI, alone or in combination with other injuries, more than doubled among children (age 19 or younger).

CSN Webinar
Feb 21 2019

New CSN Resources on the Costs of Childhood Injuries

Release Date: 
2017-11-28 00:00:00

In 2015, injuries caused 13,363 deaths in U.S. children and adolescents aged 0-19. In addition, injuries were responsible for 200,225 hospitalizations and almost 7.7 million emergency department (ED) visits in this population (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], WISQARS, 2017). One important way to understand the burden of childhood injuries is by looking at the costs of those injuries.

The Medical Costs of Childhood Injuries: Deaths

In 2015, the total medical costs of injury-related deaths of children age 19 and younger was $153.2 million. This infographic breaks out the medical cost of child deaths by injury topic.

Download a PDF of the infographic for printing

This is part of a series on the costs of childhood injuries.

Additional infographics on the medical costs of childhood injuries:

Resource Type: 
CSN Infographic

The Medical Costs of Childhood Injuries: Hospitalizations

In 2015, the total medical costs of injury-related hospitalizations of children age 19 and younger was $6.6 billion. This infographic breaks out the medical cost of hospitalizations of children by injury topic.

Download a PDF of the infographic for printing

This is part of a series on the costs of childhood injuries.

Resource Type: 
CSN Infographic

Stories of Innovation: Collecting Real-Time Outcomes Data for Injury Prevention

Participants in the Child Safety Collaborative Innovation and Improvement Network (CS CoIIN) are identifying and developing innovative ways to collect real-time outcomes data. Typically, data on injury-related deaths, hospitalizations, and emergency department (ED) visits are centrally collected at the state level. On an annual basis, these data are cleaned by the state, released, and submitted to a national dataset. The cleaning and release process leads to a two-year or more delay in the availability of the data.

Resource Type: 
CSN Publications

Implementation of State Youth Concussion Laws: Perspectives from the Frontlines

The second session of the webinar series “Advancing Injury Prevention through Policy” focused on state youth concussion laws. "Implementation of State Youth Concussion Laws: Perspectives from the Frontlines” first provided an update on which states have passed youth concussion laws, as well as preliminary results of an interview survey with state officials and organizational leaders charged with implementation of these laws in their own states.

CSN Webinar
Jan 24 2013

CSN's Sport-Related Concussions in Children and Adolescents - Fact Sheets 2013

New attention is being paid to the short- and long-term effects of even mild concussions as interest in and knowledge of the dangers of sport-related concussions have increased. In a review of state 2012 MCH Block Grant applications, the Children’s Safety Network found that 31 states described their involvement in activities related to the prevention of traumatic brain injuries.

Resource Type: 
CSN Publications

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