When a sports reporter asked Major League Baseball legend Rogers Hornsby what he did when there was no baseball, he famously said: “I’ll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.”
Historically, baseball has been a spring sport, well, THE spring sport. Now, though, many places across the country have fall ball and summer traveling teams with spring baseball practice beginning in the winter months. So baseball has really become a year-round sport. This change is great for baseball enthusiasts. It can be a bit problematic in terms of injuries, especially for younger players.
The sudden, high-speed twisting of the core that occurs during the swing of the baseball bat can lead to muscle strains and spasms as well as damage to tendons and ligaments. And because of the complexity of the back and its associated muscles and nerve bundles, the act of pitching may cause the risk of back and shoulder injury to be even greater. And then there’s flying balls and sometimes, flying bats.
If you’re a parent looking for ways to help prevent your baseball-playing child from injury, here are some great suggestions:
- Use protective equipment that is designed to keep your child safe. Baseball is one of the leading causes of sports-related eye injuries in children.
- Make sure your child stretches and warms up adequately before practices and games.
- Don’t let your child skip stretching after practices and games.
- Make sure your child learns proper techniques for swinging the bat and throwing the ball.
- Make sure your child participates in aerobic activities regularly and is active outside of playing baseball.
- Make sure your child’s cleats and other equipment fit properly.
- Make sure your child stays hydrated.
- No matter how great your young pitcher is, don’t let your child pitch too much.
- Address any pain immediately. Don’t wait for it to get better on its own.
- Finally, and most importantly, make sure your child is having fun!
Have a concern? Is any member of your family struggling with back pain? Make an appointment with us today. Just give us a call at (530) 662-9181.