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KIDS PLAYING SPORTS

Children are not small adults. They are physiologically, mentally, and psychologically different than adults. It is important for sports training and conditioning to be age specific. The following are some guidelines for keeping young athletes healthy:

- Children need daily healthy meals. Calcium is especially important for its healing and preventive properties: prevention of bone fractures, muscle cramps, and muscle injuries.

- A healthy weight must be maintained. Some sports, such as wrestling, encourage their athletes to observe strict dietary rules.

- Vitamin supplements may help to meet daily requirements. Calcium is especially important for prevention of injuries.

- Resistance training should be performed at lower than maximum levels. Kids can use their own body weight, light dumbbells, or medicine balls. Exercise machines are not ideal for children.

- It is important to maintain a high degree of flexibility. Proper warm-up and cool-down exercises are essential before and after practice and games.

- The proper sports equipment designed to prevent injury should always
be worn.

- Sports drinks and water are better choices than sugar, carbonated,
and caffeinated drinks.

- Pressure should not be placed on children to progress at the same rate as other children. They may not be ready to progress at the same rate; their biological clocks are on different times.

- Plenty of rest is needed.

- Parents need to watch for early signs of physical problems such as pain or limpness. Many kids will try to ignore an injury. Prompt treatment of injuries along with rehabilitation is important.

- Conditioning programs are needed before and during a sport's season to improve muscle strength, endurance, flexibility and cardio-respiratory fitness. Tune-Up can be used as an effective conditioning system because it allows to reach a higher level of vitality through aerobic exercise with resistance combined with massage, acupressure, and reflexology utilizing a massage belt.

- It is important to keep the body hydrated before and during exercise. Eight glasses of water is the daily-recommended amount.


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Article © copyright Mikhail Levitin Institute | Graphics and Design © copyright Steven Monk