Chicago White Sox and Chicagoland Safe Kids promote sports safety at local school

Chicago White Sox and Chicagoland Safe Kids promote sports safety at local school

May 10, 2000

Two hundred fourth through eighth-grade students at Andrew Carnegie Elementary School, 1414 E. 61st, Chicago, will learn about preventing sports injuries on Friday, May 12, 2000 at 11:00 a.m. during National SAFE KIDS Week. White Sox catcher Josh Paul, assistant trainer Mark Anderson and University of Chicago Children's Hospital pediatric sports medicine specialist Dr. Holly Benjamin, will discuss injury prevention, treatment, proper training and safe play.

The theme of this year's SAFE KIDS Week (May 6-13, 2000) is "Get Into the Game!" focusing on sports-injury prevention.

The popularity of sports for children has skyrocketed. In turn, sports- and recreation-related injuries are increasing. Each year, kids are treated for concussions, broken bones, dislocated joints, torn ligaments, and lacerations caused by playing sports. It is estimated that more than half of these injuries could be prevented through proper conditioning, protective equipment, adequate hydration and close supervision.

One of every three children who have participated in organized sports has been injured, according to a nationwide survey released May 4, 2000, by the National SAFE KIDS Campaign and the National Athletic Trainers' Association and its Research & Education Foundation. While an estimated half of all sports-related injuries are preventable, most parents believe there is nothing they could have done to prevent their child's injury.

The survey also found that:

  • One-third of parents (34 percent) say they do not often take the same safety precautions during their child's practice as in a game, although most sports injuries occur during practice.
  • Only one in four organized sports activities always has a certified athletic trainer on-site, despite recommendations to have one present during all sporting activities. Additionally, more than one-third (41 percent) of parents report that their kids' coaches are not certified in CPR and do not keep a first-aid kit on hand during play.

The Chicagoland SAFE KIDS Coalition is part of the National SAFE KIDS Campaign, the first and only national organization dedicated solely to the prevention of unintentional injury — the number-one killer of children ages 14 and under. More than 280 state and local coalitions across the country will participate in SAFE KIDS Week by hosting family safety fairs and other community events. Parents, caregivers and children will have the opportunity to learn about sports injuries and other unintentional risks to children, including car and bike crashes, drowning, falls, fires, burns, and poisonings. The Chicagoland Coalition, based at the University of Chicago Children's Hospital, is comprised of hospitals and injury-prevention advocates from the Chicago area.