Posted: Apr 15, 2012 9:40 PM by Kamen Entchev
Updated: Apr 16, 2012 8:02 AM
CHICAGO -- Adolescent sports injuries are becoming a bigger problem. After a detailed look, some possible reasons behind the injuries have been brought to the light.
Researchers at Loyola University found that in 2011, multisport athletes, like Meghan Nappier, were almost twice less likely to get injured.
Maryland doctor, James Dreese, says that participating in multiple sports improves your coordination and muscle development.
"In cross country she just tells us to go run and so we'd run like four miles or so and we come back. And then we do a couple sprints, and then in basketball we would do a lot of sprints, we wouldn't really do endurance," Nappier said.
And sport three is completely different.
"I mean soccer you've got to have lots of endurance," Nappier said.
Meghan has had two minor injuries before, and she thinks playing multiple sports helps her stay healthy.
"I think it helps because you're doing a bunch of different things, and moving in every which direction, and that gets your muscles used to it, and that helps them know their limits, and if I push it too far I get hurt," Nappier said.
According to the Center for Injury Research and Policy, high school athletes suffer 1.4 million painful injuries per year. Award winning athletic trainer, Pat Forbis, says that how many sports you play is not the reason for these injuries.
"The biggest thing I think is based upon in our society is that we now have team sports at a younger age," Forbis said.
Forbis says that the new competition has had negative effects.
"Not the fact that the parents are being terrible or the coaches aren't doing a good job. It's just the fact that the kids would signal that it's time to rest and because we're in an organized situation we keep continuing," Forbis said.
Forbis emphasizes a key to stopping adolescent injuries.
"In my 33 years of adolescent and young kid athletes and athletic injuries I have seen them with kids that have multiple sports or single sports, the key is resting, taking breaks, and doing things differently," Forbis said.
Different reasons, different solutions, but a big problem.
The study looked at children 18 and under with an average age of 13.
Doctor Kory Gill of Chicago says specialization is safer in high school.