Couture for Athletes: What to Wear When Playing It Safe
Ice skating, rollerskating, or inline skating: "For any type of
skating, your child needs properly sized skates that fit like a shoe with a
thumbnail's width from the end of the toe to the end of the skate," Maharam
says. "Rollerbladers must wear a helmet, knee pads, wrist guards, and hip
pads." The AAPD recommends mouth guards.
Soccer: "Knee pads and shin guards are important for soccer
players," Maharam says. "Some people say helmets are a good idea
because the constant heading of the ball may cause mild brain injury." The
AAP recommends sports goggles with polycarbonate lenses, and the AAPD
recommends mouth guards.
Football: "Football players should be protected from top to
bottom -- starting with a helmet with a polycarbonate shield and ending with
hip padding," Maharam says. The AAPD recommends mouth guards.
Biking: "All bikers need helmets; it's the law," Maharam
says, though laws differ from state to state. "They should also have an
appropriately sized bike with padding on the center bar." Bicycle helmets
have been shown to reduce the risk of head injury by as much as 85% and the
risk of brain injury by as much as 88%, according to the National Safe Kids
Campaign. About 75% of bicycle-related fatalities among children could be
prevented with a bicycle helmet. The AAPD recommends that all bikers be fitted
for a mouth guard.
Most protective equipment is available through schools or at a sporting
"It's also important that adults supervise children playing sports and
where they play them to avoid any accidents related to poor playing
conditions," Maharam says.
For more information on children's sports safety, contact the National Youth
Sports Safety Foundation at: http://www.nyssf.org