New York, NY—February 25, 2002
Currently, over 2.9 million kids participate in Little League baseball and softball. That’s up by more than 50% since 1980. With more and more kids involved in team sports and the pressure to win rising among these young jocks, their health safety is now seriously jeopardized.
“The conditioning and training of young athletes is not the same as that for adult athletes. Winning isn’t everything when it comes to kids. Therefore, parents must involve themselves in the health safety of their children on the playing fields. They must aggressively protect them from overuse injuries and physical damage that can result in lifelong disabilities,” according to Dr. Jordan Metzl, Medical Director of the Sports Medicine Institute for Young Athletes (SMIYA) at Hospital for Special Surgery.
Here is Hospital for Special Surgery’s Parents & Coaches Guide to Baseball & Softball for Young Athletes:
HSS Pitching Dos & Don’ts for Adolescents
Dr. Metzl stated, “Parents and coaches should pay special attention to the pitching prowess of adolescents. Professional pitchers who most likely enjoy long and successful careers are those who did not overwork their arms while they were still maturing.”
Therefore, parents and coaches should remember to:
HSS Early Warning Signs & Symptoms of Injuries
Since young ball players are very enthusiastic about playing the game, they often do not report problems with their elbow or shoulder. Therefore, to help improve the chances of early diagnosis and treatment, parents and coaches must pay attention to a number of early warning signs of impending injuries:
Dr. Metzl added, “Parents and coaches must remember that most super athletes are not born that way. Their talents and aptitudes are developed properly over time. Super athletes did not always win their games while growing up.”
About Hospital for Special Surgery
Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) is the world’s largest academic medical center focused on musculoskeletal health. HSS is nationally ranked No. 1 in orthopedics and No. 2 in rheumatology by U.S. News & World Report (2016-2017), and is the first hospital in New York State to receive Magnet Recognition for Excellence in Nursing Service from the American Nurses Credentialing Center four consecutive times. HSS has one of the lowest infection rates in the country. HSS is an affiliate of Weill Cornell Medical College and as such all Hospital for Special Surgery medical staff are faculty of Weill Cornell. The hospital's research division is internationally recognized as a leader in the investigation of musculoskeletal and autoimmune diseases. Hospital for Special Surgery is located in New York City and online at www.hss.edu.