Lacrosse has become an increasingly popular sport here in Austin. It is played right now during the spring season by both boys and girls, and by people of all ages. Many local middle and high schools have adopted lacrosse programs, and there are numerous club teams popping up all over.
It is a highly fast-paced game involving speed and skill to pass the ball between fellow players’ sticks and hopefully deposit it in the net!
While the injuries associated with lacrosse are often less serious than those suffered in full contact sports such as football and hockey, they do happen.
Ankle sprains account for 21% of all reported injuries for girls and 16% for boys at the scholastic level. In addition to sprains and strains, other common lacrosse injuries include anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears,shin splints, bruises, and blisters. Overuse injuries are also possible due to the repetitive nature of slinging the stick back and forth over your shoulder.
Here are some prevention tips to keep you injury-free on the lacrosse field this spring:
Know the rules.
Lacrosse has very specific rules on contact that differ for boys and girls. Make sure you, or your child, coaches, and officials know and enforce them.
Have an injury plan.
Discuss with your organization what happens if a player is injured on the field. Do you have proper ice/heat therapy, bandages, and splints or graces at the ready during each game if someone is hurt? Do you know where the nearest emergency room is located?
Warm up before practice and games.
This is true of any sport, but especially so with lacrosse where quick sprinting up and down the field can take a toll on your body if you are not properly loosened up.
Check all equipment.
Protective equipment should be sized properly and in good condition. Typical lacrosse equipment includes eye goggles (girls), helmets (boys), mouth guards, gloves, and elbow or shoulder pads.
Take a break of at least a day or two between games and make sure to rest sufficiently when your muscles/body are sore. Also avoid playing back-to-back seasons and for more than one team at a time.
If you, or your child, suffer an injury while playing lacrosse, seek medical attention immediately or do so if the pain does not subside within a few days.