Objective: To provide certified athletic trainers, physicians, and other health care professionals with recommendations on best practices for the prevention of overuse sports injuries in pediatric athletes (aged 6-18 years).
Background: Participation in sports by the pediatric population has grown tremendously over the years. Although the health benefits of participation in competitive and recreational athletic events are numerous, one adverse consequence is sport-related injury. Overuse or repetitive trauma injuries represent approximately 50% of all pediatric sport-related injuries. It is speculated that more than half of these injuries may be preventable with simple approaches.
Recommendations: Recommendations are provided based on current evidence regarding pediatric injury surveillance, identification of risk factors for injury, preparticipation physical examinations, proper supervision and education (coaching and medical), sport alterations, training and conditioning programs, and delayed specialization.