Fall Sports Injuries

Consider These 10 Tips to Avoid Fall Sports Injuries
Orthopaedic surgeons provide safety tips to avoid football, soccer and other fall sport injuries

Football, soccer, cheer leading and volleyball are popular fall youth sports activities. As kids settle into the new school year, they’re also excited to hit the field again. To help reduce the risk of common injuries, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) and the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine (AOSSM) offer safety tips to keep kids in the game and out of emergency rooms.


According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) in 2013:

  • Approximately 881,700 football-related injuries occurred in kids  5-18 years old
  • Nearly 434,000 were treated for soccer injuries
  • 99,884 were treated for cheerleading-related injuries
  • More than 94,000 for volleyball related injuries



  1. Have a pre-season physical examination and follow your doctor’s recommendations.
  2. Warm-up and cool down properly with low-impact exercises like walking or cycling.
  3. Consistently incorporate strength training and stretching. A good stretch involves not going beyond the point of resistance and should be held for 10-12 seconds.
  4. Hydrate adequately to maintain health and minimize muscle cramps. Waiting until you are thirsty is often too late to hydrate properly.
  5. Keep an eye out for unsafe play surfaces. Playing grounds should be in good condition.
  6. Don’t play through the pain. Speak with an orthopaedic sports medicine specialist or athletic trainer if you have any concerns about injuries.
  7. When participating, wear protective gear such as properly fitted cleats, pads, helmets, mouth guard or other necessary equipment for the selected sport.
  8. Play multiple positions and/or sports during the off-season to minimize overuse injuries.
  9. Pay attention to weather conditions such as wet, slippery fields that can lead to injuries.
  10. Avoid the pressure to over train. Listen to your body and decrease training time and intensity, if pain or discomfort develops. This will reduce the risk of injury and help avoid “burn-out.”