It’s that time of year again! Football season is just around the corner!
If you or your child are planning to play tackle football this fall, you may be wondering, what are some things you can do to stay safe on the field?
Football is obviously one of the roughest sports in the world, and thus, injuries are quite common. But staying safe and avoiding longterm damage is possible if you follow the right guidelines.
In this article, we’ll give you a few football safety tips that you can use to ensure that you’re doing everything you can to keep yourself or your child safe this football season.
Now then, let’s get started!
Wear All Protective Padding
Everyone knows that football players are supposed to be covered from head to toe in protective padding to help reduce the risk of injury. But over the past few years, it’s become a bit of a trend to skip out on some of that padding, specifically knee and thigh pads, to make a fashion statement.
It’s important that, when playing football, you wear all of the required padding while on the field. This is mandatory in most youth leagues, but the rules aren’t as strictly enforced as they should be. It’s up to you to make sure that you or your child are protected before participating in a practice or game.
And if you or someone in your life breaks a bone, or suffers any other kind of injury on the field, take medical action immediately. Even if it’s just an X-ray to confirm nothing major is wrong, it’s worth letting an expert check you out before putting the pads back on.
Make Sure Your Helmet Fits Properly
When talking about football safety, concussions and other brain injuries are often the most discussed types of injuries. Wearing your helmet can reduce these types of injuries, but it’s vital that you not only wear that helmet but wear it correctly.
A lot goes into wearing a football helmet properly. Fastening both buttons on the chin strap tightly and getting a helmet that fits snug on the head are the most important factors.
It’s also crucial to make sure that no padding is missing from the helmet. This can be uncomfortable at first, but you will get used to it, and you’ll be much safer as a result.
Did you know that the average NFL football player is wearing around 15 to 20 pounds of protective equipment? That equipment, combined with the hot sun, can be extremely dangerous and increase the chances of heatstroke.
That’s why it’s important to take the steps necessary to stay hydrated during football season.
Hydration starts before a practice or game, so it’s wise to drink plenty of fluids the night before. Also, things like routine water breaks should be required during the game or practice.
If you as a parent feel that your child should be getting more water breaks or cooldown sessions, don’t be afraid to speak up. Most youth leagues require these during a game, but practices are often less regulated and thus are where most problems occur.
Utilize Proper Tackling Form
Last but not least, it’s important to address one of the most fundamental parts of football: tackling.
The way that tackling is being taught has changed compared to just a few years ago. Players are now being taught to engage with their shoulders, instead of their facemasks directly into the chest of the opposing player.
This “take your head out of the game” mindset has gone a long way in reducing head and neck injuries, especially for younger players who are still developing physically.
So if you have a child that is playing football this fall, we recommend that you study up on the proper tackling technique yourself. That way you can ensure that your child is being coached correctly, as well as enable you to be on the lookout for any fundamental issues.
Use These Tips to Practice Good Football Safety
Well, there you have it! Those are a few football safety tips that you can use this season!
Remember, be sure to not only wear the required protective equipment but wear equipment that fits properly. Also, if you or your child suffer a head injury, consult with a medical professional immediately and do not return to action until fully cleared to do so.
Be sure to visit us for any football or sports-related injuries this season! We’ll help you get back on the field in no time!