When it comes to kids playing sports, injuries are all to common. From twisted ankles to broken bones, getting injured is just a part of the game for many kids. But there is one injury that is more serious then a simple twist or break: concussions. Concussions are common in many sports, and can result in some pretty serious consequences if not treated properly.
Thankfully, the rate of concussions in basketball is much lower than in other sports. In basketball coaches focus more on athleticism and skill than physical contact which helps to lower concussion rates. But the possibility is still something to be aware of.
Concussions are less common in basketball
Compared to sports like football, hockey and rugby, the concussion rates are much lower in basketball. One study concluded that the rate of concussion in rugby is 30x that of basketball, and in hockey it’s 10x as likely. So, while there’s still a chance kids might get a concussion playing basketball, the chance is much lower than in other sports.
Check out this video that’s a perfect concussion primer for any parent or coach:
Why is basketball less prone to concussions?
While basketball can be a physical sport with some risks for injury, the focus is more on developing athleticism that doesn’t rely on physical force to get the job done. Young players are coached to build their skills without physical contact, so there is less worry that contact will lead to injury.
Athleticism is key
Many parts of a young players game work together to improve skill development and athleticism. These points will help a player learn how to master their game and in turn, reduce their likelihood of getting injured with something as serious as a concussion.
A players’ work ethic
The willingness to work hard and learn new skills plays a significant role in athleticism. When a player is focused on working hard to improve their own game, they are less likely to make quick decisions without thinking of the consequences.
Having a good attitude means a player is less inclined to react badly when a play doesn’t go their way. They are more concerned about the positives of the game. This helps ensure their head stays in the game, and they’re less at risk of catching an errant elbow to taking a fall.
At the end of the day, the skills possessed by players are the best way to stay ahead of any potential injuries like concussions, and to grow their athleticism. A strong ability to shoot, pass, dribble and rebound will help players to play the best game they can.
Being passionate about playing a good game helps to prevent the likelihood of concussion. If players are invested in performing well, playing a skilled game and staying positive, they will be less likely to cross into behaviour that might result in physical contact and a possible concussion.
Players that are open to advice from their coach will be more willing to accept feedback that will help them avoid injury.
When a player is confident in his skills and plays, there is less opportunity for mistakes to be made that might lead to injuries like concussions.
What to do if your suspect a concussion
- See your doctor immediately for diagnosis and treatment
- Stay off the court until you’ve been given the all-clear by a doctor
- Let the coach know asap
Prevention is the best option
The best way to approach the possibility of a concussion is to take precautions that help to reduce the risk of receiving one.
- Teach players good sportsmanship
- Enforce the rules of the game, especially those that involve physical contact
- Create a safe space on the court for players to be able to play the game without worry of physical harm. Do this by teaching players to be mindful of their bodies and how they move
Take precautions, but don’t worry
While concussions can happen in any sport, basketball is one of the safer options when it comes to playing sports. As with any injury, there are steps you can take to help prevent concussions, and things you can do after one occurs to make the likelihood of future damage much less.
Attending training camps and joining after school house league or rep league teams can help players connect with coaches who will teach them how to play their best game, which will often result in less injuries.