Tennis Safety Tips For Your Child |

Tennis is a phenomenal sport for everyone, and it’s never too early to start learning more about this amazing game. As with any sport, though, there are many potential dangers involved, and educating your child about those possible dangers is a great way to help protect them during every practice, match, or quick pick-up game.The Right GearAny good game starts with the right gear, and while your little tennis star may think this one is a no-brainer, it really takes a bit of thought from both of you. Start by thinking about what your son or daughter is wearing before you ever get to the court. Shoes designed for tennis are an absolute must. They can help to support the heel and ensure he or she doesn’t slide when on the court. If the court surface they play on routinely is made from asphalt or concrete, adding heel inserts to minimize back stress could be a good idea.Shoes, though, aren’t your only foot-related concern. Socks are important, too. Be sure to choose socks that aren’t cotton-based. They’ll absorb moisture and wick it away from the foot more effectively. They can also help to prevent blisters. If blisters or foot pain becomes a problem, you may want to look into padded tennis socks.The racquet is just as important of a concern. Selecting one that is too heavy or too light could easily cause an injury to the shoulder or elbow. Both the grip size and the right amount of tension in the strings play a role here, too. You may want to chat with your little one’s coach or a pro shop to ensure you get a racquet that is the perfect size and shape for his or her tennis level. Make certain, though, that you take the budding tennis star with you during the purchase process.A Good Warm-UpThere’s just no substitute for a solid warm-up before your child hits the court. Make sure you arrive early for practice or a match so they can spend five to ten minutes in a warm-up session. In some cases, the coach will help the children warm-up. If not, though, make certain your little one does several minutes of stretching, followed by a few minutes of jogging in place, or some jumping jacks. During the stretching session, they should carefully stretch their arms, wrists, shoulders, and legs, ensuring that each stretch is held for a period of at least 30 seconds.Avoid Playing HazardsIn some cases, your child won’t actually encounter any problems until they’re actually on the court. Loose balls on the court could potentially cause a trip and fall accident. Make certain there aren’t any issues that could cause him or her to trip and fall at some point during the match. In the event there is a problem, find a way to solve it or at least make everyone involved aware of it.The WeatherTeaching your child how to stay safe on the court, though, doesn’t just involve going over tips that help them keep their bodies safe during this physically demanding game. Other outside forces could be at play as well. Tennis is often primarily an outdoor game, and the weather can be a huge factor. Make sure your little one knows not to play in adverse weather conditions of all types. If it’s extremely hot, for example, a fast-paced game like tennis could easily lead to heat stroke. In the extreme cold, muscles tend to be stiffer, and that makes them far more susceptible to problems like tearing and spraining. If it gets too windy, tendonitis can be a problem thanks to the racquets. Thunderstorms present an obvious lightning risk, and even just rain can make the court wet and slippery. Let your child know that tennis is a game best played in good weather.An Ounce of PreventionMake certain that your little tennis enthusiast has a bottle of water or a sports drink on hand for breaks in between play. This will help to keep him or her hydrated. If it’s particularly warm, make certain there’s a shady spot to rest between games and sets, and ensure the racquet handle is dry to help avoid blisters. You may also want to train your child to stop playing right away if they feel any sign of pain or discomfort. From torn rotator cuffs to Achilles tendon ruptures, tennis injuries can be quite serious, and playing through the pain is only likely to make the situation worse. Having a first aid kit on-hand to tackle small scrapes or other injuries is also a good idea.Your child could easily be serving for one of the great championship matches someday, but only if you teach him or her a few safety measures now.