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Rugby players gathering before a match

Teen Spirit

Are you worried about how much time your teenager spends watching TV, gaming, or scrolling through social media? Whilst getting your teenager in to sport might be a challenge, it has so many advantages:

 

Builds Confidence

As your teen finds their feet in a sport they enjoy, you will see their confidence bloom. Not only in sport, that confidence will spread to other aspects of their life, too. 

 

Sportsmanship & Teamwork

Especially in team sports, working together towards a common goal creates a sense of teamwork and sportsmanship. Your teen will learn to work together as a team or group, learning to respect each other, their coaches and umpire. Sportsmanship is developed in playing against other teams, as fair play is a must in sport.

 

Making Friends

Sport is a great way to encourage friendships, especially as they already have a mutual interest. If your teen is particularly shy or introvert, playing sport can be a good way to bring them out of their shell and make friends with others.

 

Time Management

Something a lot of teenagers struggle with, is time management. Sport helps develop teens ability (and yours) with time management by set practice and game times. This is especially evident in a team sport, where a game cannot start until all the players are present. This is a life skill that will aid their future careers. 

 

A Great Outlet For Teens

Does your teenager, especially boys, suffer from anger control issues? With their hormones all over the show, social pressure and life situations, anger issues can arise. Sport is a great way to burn off steam and vent any anger in a safe environment.

 

Here are some hot tips for your teens to survive the upcoming winter sports season.

 

Rest

It is important not to over do it. Osteopaths often see injuries when teenagers push themselves that little bit too far or do not rest when advised to. When you have an injury, it is important to take a break. If your health professional has told you to take a break, for however long, it is in your best interests to do so. Pushing through can lead to further damage.

 

Stretch

Help avoid injuries and niggly pains by stretching. Your level of sport and frequency will determine how often you stretch. When stretching, remember the stretch should feel like ‘good pain’, not the ‘bad pain’ associated with over-stretching. For advice on stretching and the specific stretches or exercises you need to do, speak to an osteopath to guide your teen in the right direction. Preventing injuries is the goal for osteopaths.

 

Address Those Injuries

Osteopaths commonly treat teenagers during sports seasons for a range of injuries. Treatment is always most effective when the injury is acute, as there are few compensations else where in the body. 

 

Eat Well

Support their physical exercise with a well-balanced diet. Although you may need a second mortgage to keep up with your teens’ volume of eating! Whether your teen is a boy or girl, keep nutrition in mind. Are they eating a ‘rainbow of vegetables’, plenty of protein and good fats? If you are worried about their diet, speak to your local nutritionist. 

 

Drink Up

Many of us, even as adults, do not drink enough water. I mean water, not juice, soft drink, tea, or coffee, but plain and simple water. It is important, especially on game days, to keep teens’ fluids up.

 


 

Words: Sarah Boughtwood, Osteopath, Milford