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National Youth Sports Safety Month

National Youth Sports Safety Month

It’s National Youth Sports Safety Month, and it’s the perfect time to make sure you’re ready to enroll your little ones in summer sports.

Before your kids play organized sports, make sure they have a physical exam with their doctor that clears them to play sports safely.

Get Ready for Summer Sports

 

Your children should always have a water bottle at practice and games, especially during the summer heat. Help them stay hydrated before, during, and after play.

Kids and Hydration During Sports

 

Stretching before exercise and sports can help release muscle tension and prevent injuries like sprains and muscle tears. Make sure your athlete gets to warm up before playing.

Kids and Stretching Before Exercise

 

Rest is important on your growing kids’ bodies. It’s recommended that kids take at least 1 day a week off from a particular sport. 

A coach on the team should be certified in first aid and CPR, understand concussions, and help players avoid overuse injuries. Kids should also feel safe with their coaches, not just motivated.

Coaches Keeping Your Kids Safe

 

If you’re a parent, consider hosting an event that spotlights safety by inviting a trainer, physical therapist or other health professional to speak with players, parents, and coaches about safety.

Host a Health Sporting Event

 

You can always look to your sport’s governing body or even local sporting goods stores for health and safety guidelines and resources. If you hold gear swaps, make sure you know which equipment is safe to reuse.

League Health and Safety Guidelines
Team Up for Greatness

Vantage Point: To Be A Star

There is a patch of I-5 South, just as you turn the bend, where The Tacoma Dome comes into view, and the sight always makes my heart jump into my throat. Opened in 1983, The Dome has hosted major concerts, professional sports competitions, and events. Most importantly for me, it’s also the place where Washington state high school athletes compete at the championship level.

My boys got to experience the honor of standing up among their peers as a part of a team of excellence on December 7, 2008, when Cashmere won the 1A High School Football State Championship. It’s a memory that I, and most of the town, which filled one whole side of the dome, will never forget.

This accomplishment started with the players, who had been honing their skills since grade school. It also took a school backing them with quality equipment and coaching, a town believing in them, and parents dedicated to supporting their goals. The second-string players, who only got a few seconds on the field that day, were just as important as the starters. In practice, they were the ones who helped the starters sharpen their skills. To say the least, they were all stars that day.

I am fortunate in my professional work to also be part of an amazing team. A team, which I say with great pride, whose Washington Medicare plans just earned 4.5 out of 5 stars from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.*

These Star Ratings measure more than just customer service. They also measure help managing chronic conditions, member complaints, working with providers to help members stay healthy, and members’ overall experience with the plan.

This achievement means a lot. It validates our efforts at Health Alliance and lets us know we are taking good care of our members. But just like a championship football team, we respect this is not an individual endeavor, and we appreciate all of you for sharing access to your resources and welcoming us into your communities. There is no way we could have accomplished this without your support and collaboration. As we share this esteemed recognition with you, please know, we sincerely count you as a member of our team, and we couldn’t have done it without you.

 

Shannon Sims is a Medicare community liaison for Health Alliance, serving Chelan, Douglas, Grant, and Okanogan counties in Washington. She has four sons and two grandsons. During her time off, she performs as part of a rodeo drill team on her horse, Skeeter.

 

*Medicare evaluates plans based on a 5-Star Rating System. Star Ratings are calculated each year and may change from one year to the next.