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Preparing Athletes for a Successful Season

August 19, 2022 by Eden Metzger
(Baylor College of Medicine)

HOUSTON, Texas As school begins this fall students are ready to get back on the field and court. Dr. Theodore Shybut, assistant professor of orthopedic surgery and sports medicine at Baylor College of Medicine, advises parents and students on how to develop a healthy and fun relationship with sports and exercise.

Shybut recommends encouraging exercise in children’s daily lives and seeing what they gravitate towards. “Keep it fun and interesting. The goal is to cement the idea of exercise as an enjoyable and healthy habit,” Shybut said. 

“Once your child latches onto something they like, then you can then work together to begin mastering the fundamentals of the activity they choose to pursue in the long term,” Shybut continues.

Shybut notes that the on-season is just as important as the off-season. To build athleticism Shybut recommends keeping active between seasons and adjusting to playing in the heat. “Even a week of regular exercise before group training sessions begin can be beneficial.” 

Shybut encourages parents to seek medical help when they notice their child’s athletic abilities slip. It could be due to an unseen injury. To prevent injuries, Shybut suggests a consistent sleep schedule, hydration, and a diet that correlates with the sports students play to meet their necessary caloric intake. 

“Some of the most common injuries young athletes experience are a result of pushing too much too fast too quickly,” Shybut says. “Junior high and high school athletes may have access to their team’s athletic trainers, who can often identify the problem and the correct course to address the problem. ATs are also knowledgeable about preventing injury. If there is not a training staff available, many resources developed by reputable athletic organizations, like STOP Sports Injuries, can be used to help ensure young athletes stay safe.”

 

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