How to Protect Your Child’s Feet and Ankles this Football Season

September 17, 2019

Fall is finally here, bringing with it pumpkin spice candles, crackling leaves, and, for some of us, our favorite fall activity—football. If your child plays football, you’re no doubt gearing up for a season full of last-minute carpools, weekend games, and the inevitable scrapes and tumbles. Below, our Charlotte University podiatrist shares a few tips to help your child protect his feet and ankles this season.  

Buy Proper Cleats

When buying football cleats, it is imperative to make sure they fit properly. Shoes that are too small will be uncomfortable, and could cause injury if your child can’t move properly. Shoes that are too big will be too loose to provide the right amount of support he or she needs. High-top cleats are a good choice, especially if your child is a lineman, as they provide some much-needed ankle support. Purchasing cleats with rubber outsoles can also help reduce the chance of injury, because they repel water and make slipping less likely.

Make Sure Your Child is Warming Up

Warming up is an important part in any sport, especially football. Ask your child whether he or she is asked to warm up before starting practice, and if you have any concerns, discuss the matter with his or her coach. Warming up should be a priority before every game and practice, as it allows your child to stretch the muscles and reduce the chance of a strain. Going into a game cold could lead to overuse and overstretching of muscles, which could result a sprain that puts your child out of the game for the remainder of the season.

Advise Your Child to Listen to His Body

Most kids, especially those who have an interest in football, don’t want to let others know that they are in pain, for fear of being seen as weak or being removed from the game. Make sure to tell your child that “pushing through” an injury is the worst thing they can do improve themselves as an athlete, because to do so can result in further injury that causes significant pain and takes a considerable amount of time to heal. Tell your child to pay attention to his or her body, and rest, even if it means sitting out a game or two. If your child sustains an injury during the game, they should notify the coach, athletic trainer, or sideline physician.

Wrap the Ankles

Using tape to wrap your child’s ankles can provide the extra support needed to avoid a stress-related injury such as Achilles tendonitis. Tape also works well with the high-top cleats previously mentioned. Any extra support to your child’s ankles will help your him or her avoid injury.

See our Charlotte University Podiatrist Today!

If you need a podiatrist in Statesville NC, stop by Ryan Foot and Ankle Clinic today! Click here to schedule your appointment.