Keeping Your Cool: Helping Kids Stay Safe during Summer Sports
Sports are a great way to keep kids occupied during summer break while also making sure they’re getting the physical activity they need to stay healthy. It’s important to make sure that your children are safe when playing or practicing outside in the warmer temperatures. Keep these child safety tips in mind to ensure this summer’s sports leagues are not only fun but safe as well.
Keep Him Hydrated
Staying hydrated is an obvious first step as dehydration is one of the biggest problems for kids during summer activities. The more your child sweats, the more fluids his body is losing. Ensure that he’s drinking enough water throughout the day and the equivalent of a bottle of water two hours before heading out to play. During the game, hydrating every 20 minutes is a good rule of thumb.
Speak with the Coaches
If you’re not coaching your child’s team, speak with the person who is to discuss what precautions they’re taking to make sure the kids are safe in hot weather. Suggest that timeouts and water breaks be taken in shady areas and that practices occur earlier in the day before the temperatures are the hottest. These simple precautions can make a big difference.
Choose Electrolytes over Caffeine
If you’re bringing along drinks other than water, sports drinks can be a great way to help your child replace the electrolytes he lost while playing. Avoid drinks with caffeine as much as you can as these will only cause your child to become more dehydrated. There are a variety of options to choose from that can help your child get what he needs.
Lather Up with SPF
Make sure your child has sunscreen on all exposed areas of his body while he’s outside. If the game or practice is long, he may need to reapply throughout. A spray-on sunscreen can be easy for him to do on his own quickly so he can stay protected even if you’re not there. Some sunscreens are made specifically for sports so they don’t come off with sweat.
If you’re struggling to get your child to consume the right amount of water, get creative. Make yummy popsicles with water and fruit inside that the entire team will love, or bring along ice towels to help keep him cool. Talk to your child about the importance of keeping fluids in his body so he understands what he needs to do to stay healthy.
What tips have you used to keep your kids safe while playing summer sports? We’d love to hear your summer safety tips for children in the comments section.