Enrolling your children in a swimming program is a great way to expose them to an athletic sport that is fun and is a perfect way to help them achieve long, lean, toned bodies. And being on a swim team also allows your children to meet new people, make new friends, and participate in swimming competitions that will build self-confidence and give your children a sense of accomplishment and success.
But parents who enrol their children on a swim team should also be aware of the potential injuries their children might have to deal with at any time during their swimming careers. Below are some of the more common injuries that swimmers typically have to deal with, so that you can know what to expect while your child is swimming to success on his favourite swim team.
The most common injury that swimmers deal with has to do with their shoulders. This should come as no surprise, especially since swimmers use their upper body strength and arms to propel themselves through the water. Many times, when an injury occurs to a swimmer’s shoulder, it has to do with the rotator cuff of the shoulder. Also known as “swimmer’s shoulder,” this type of injury can usually be the result of using improper technique in the water, so making sure your child understands instructions well, and is being instructed by a great swimming trainer, can ensure that he or she will not have to deal with shoulder injuries. Children can avoid shoulder injuries simply by stretching out properly before and after every swimming practice or event. Maintaining proper shoulder muscle strength can also help keep everything in alignment and prevent these types of injuries.
Like shoulder injuries, neck injuries occur in child swimmers if they are not properly implementing the correct swimming techniques while they are in the pool. Keeping the head in alignment with the spine, without lifting it or twisting it in the wrong ways, can help prevent neck injuries from occurring in the first place. Therefore, making sure you hire the right swimming instructor will definitely help your child achieve the proper posture throughout every type of swim stroke.
Knee injuries typically occur during the breast stroke because, when not properly executed, the movement can cause the knee to rotate externally, putting a lot of stress upon the inner ligament in the knee. Strengthening the muscles of the legs, particularly the hamstrings and quadriceps, can help prevent this type of injury, as can properly stretching before and after a swimming practice and event. Make sure your child warms up properly, too, before diving in. And alternating between swimming strokes and taking a break from the breast stroke for a bit of time can also help prevent knee injuries.
Like all other swimming injuries, if your child ends up suffering from a back injury, particularly in the lower back area, it is probably a result of poor posture in the pool and an inability to keep proper alignment throughout different types of strokes.
Samantha Durrans is a renowned author in all things health and safety related – recently focusing on the potential risks extensive swimming can have on children. Samantha often visits puddleducks.com to check out the latest and safest swimming lessons for children.