OHSU

Sports and Recreation

Playing sports like baseball, soccer and basketball is really fun. But when you’re playing sports, it’s important to be careful so you don’t get hurt. You’re still growing up, and your bones and muscles aren’t as strong as they will be when you’re older.  So, while you’re practicing your latest team sport or simply taking a spin on your skateboard or snowboard, you can practice safety, too!

Here are some things you can do to keep from getting hurt.

  • Warm up before playing and cool down when you are finished. Some good ideas for warm ups are exercises like jumping jacks or jogging.
  • Know and play by the rules of the sport.
  • Don’t play if you feel sick, hurt or too tired.
  • Know how to use the sports gear.
  • Wear safety gear at all times.
  • Drink lots of water – before, during and after you play.
  • Wear sunscreen and a hat to prevent sunburn.
  • Tell your coach if you get hurt while playing.

Listen to your parents and coaches, and follow these tips to make sure you score big on safety!

Safety tips by sports:

ATVs

  • Kids under age 16 should never drive or ride on an ATV.
  • ATVs may be fun, but they can be very unsafe. Every year, hundreds of kids get hurt on ATVs.
  • The doctors and nurses at Doernbecher Children’s Hospital don’t want to see more kids get hurt. So if you’re under 16, don’t drive or ride on an ATV.

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Baseball and Softball

Playing baseball and softball can be a lot of fun. But it’s not fun getting hurt. Here are a few tips that can help you enjoy the game more and prevent you from getting hurt.

Talk to Your Parents and Coaches

  • Know and play by the rules of the game. You will have more fun and play better.
  • Don’t play if you feel sick. Tell a parent, teacher or coach if you aren’t feeling well.
  • Ask an adult what you can do to get into shape. If you’re in good shape, you have less chance of getting hurt.

Wear the Right Gear

  • Know how to use the gear correctly and make sure it fits right.
  • Wear a batting helmet.
  • If you wear glasses, ask for plastic lenses.

Play it Safe

  • Drink lots of water, especially on really hot days.
  • Wear sunscreen and a baseball cap to prevent sunburn.
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Basketball

Basketball is a fun sport that many kids like to play. But it’s not fun getting hurt. Here are a few tips that can help you have fun and keep you from getting hurt.

Talk to Your Parents and Coaches

  • Learn and play by the rules of the game. You will have more fun and play better.
  • Don’t play if you feel sick. Tell a parent, teacher or coach if you’re not feeling well.
  • Ask an adult what you can do to get in shape to play. Being in good shape will help keep you from getting hurt.
  • Always warm up before playing.

Wear the Right Gear

  • Mouth guards are very important, especially if you have braces on your teeth.
  • If you wear glasses, make sure you get special gear to protect them.
  • If you are a boy, wear an athletic supporter.

Play it Safe

  • Drink plenty of water, especially on warm days.
  • Take lots of breaks.
  • Never play if you are in pain. If something hurts, stop and tell an adult.

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Bikes

Riding a bike can be a lot of fun! But just like your parents who have to be careful and obey the rules when they’re driving a car, you need to follow the rules when you ride your bike on the road. It’s easy to fall off a bike and get hurt, especially if you don’t know the rules of the road or your bike isn’t working right.

  • Always wear a helmet that fits your head – not too big or too small.
  • Wear the helmet flat on your head.
  • Before you ride your bike, make sure it is safe and working right. Ask an adult to check your bike for safety, especially if your bike has been in a crash.
  • Test your brakes.
  • Make sure the handlebars are straight and there’s enough air in the tires.
  • If you fall off your bike, tell an adult right away. You might not know that you’re hurt.
  • Be sure to follow the Rules of the Road:
    • Make sure you know and obey all traffic laws.
    • Always ride on the right side of the road.
    • Use proper hand signals to let others know that you are turning.
    • Look both ways before crossing the street with your bicycle. Walk, don’t ride, your bike across the street.
    • Never ride in between parked or moving cars.
    • When riding through a curve, ride in single file, slow down and stay to the side of the road.
    • Never ride out from a driveway or hillside.

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Boating

Riding in a boat is a fun way to enjoy the water. But you have to be really careful when boating.

  • Always wear a life jacket that fits you
  • Stay in your seat when you’re in a boat.
  • Never get into a boat unless an adult is with you.

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Cheerleading

Cheerleading is fun and a great way to share your team spirit, but be safe!

  • Practice tricks and mounts only when your coach is there to watch.
  • Know your limits – don’t do more than you can.
  • Do warm-up exercises first.
  • If you get hurt, tell an adult right away.

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Football

Football is a fun sport, but just like every other fun activity, you have to make sure you have fun and stay safe. Follow these important tips before you play:

  • Wear the right safety gear.
  • Get a health exam before each season.
  • Go to every practice.
  • Tell your coach if you have any health conditions like asthma or epilepsy.
  • Know the rules of the sport.
  • Let the coach know when you are hurt.
  • Warm up before playing and cool down when you are finished.
  • Drink lots of water before, during and after.
  • Listen to your coach.

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Hockey

Hockey is fun, but it is easy to get hurt. These tips will help keep you safe:

  • Wear safety gear at all times when playing or practicing.
  • Warm up before playing.
  • Play by the rules of good sportsmanship.
  • Make sure the ice or field is safe before playing or practicing.
  • Learn and practice how to fall properly.  Remember: “Heads up! Don’t Duck!” Make sure you do not hit the boards with your head.
  • Avoid body checking.
  • Do not play through pain. If you hurt yourself, see a doctor.
  • Take plenty of rest breaks and stop when you get tired.

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Jet Skiing

Jet skis are fun to ride, but each year many kids get hurt while riding them.

  • Never ride a jet ski by yourself.
  • When you’re on a jet ski, make sure you wear a life jacket, safety glasses, a wetsuit, footwear and gloves.
  • Hold on tight when moving.
  • Never climb on a jet ski while it is tied to a dock, on the beach or on a trailer.
  • Never start a jet ski – that’s a job for an adult.

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Playgrounds

When you go to the playground, you go to have a good time. But it is important to remember how to play safe so you don’t get hurt. If you notice that any of the playground equipment looks like it’s broken, or if you see any loose parts, make sure that you tell an adult. They can make sure that it gets fixed.

Follow these tips to be safe:

Slides:

  • Hold onto rails when climbing up the ladder.
  • Make sure you don’t have loose strings on your clothes.
  • Keep your shoes tied so your laces don’t get caught. Always slide down feet first.
  • Wait your turn, making sure no one else is on the slide before you go.
  • Never run up the slide.

Merry-go-rounds:

  • Make sure the merry-go-round stops before you get on.
  • Sit in the middle, hold onto the bar or handles, and don’t let go.
  • Don’t get off the merry-go-round until it has stopped.

Swings:

  • Sit in the center of the swing.
  • Don’t walk or run in front or back of the swings.
  • Never stand on a swing.
  • Don’t swing too high.
  • Don’t get off the swing until it has stopped.
  • Don’t swing crooked.

Jungle gym, climber, monkey bars:

  • Don’t play on them if you can’t reach the bars.
  • Always hold on with two hands.
  • Never climb up on top of the bars.

Seesaws:

  • Always sit facing the other rider.
  • Hold on with both hands.
  • Keep your feet out from under the board.
  • Always tell the other rider when you are getting off.

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Scooters, Skates, and Boards

Riding on scooters, skateboards and in-line skates can be a lot of fun, but you need to be careful so you don’t get hurt. Follow the safety tips below so you can have fun and be safe at the same time.

  • Make sure your scooter, skateboard or in-line skates are safe. Have your parents check them before you ride.
  • Always wear safety gear, including a helmet, knee and elbow pads and wrist guards.
  • Learn how to control your speed, turn and stop.
  • Ride or skate only on smooth, dry surfaces. Avoid riding or skating on gravel, sand, dirt or other bumpy surfaces or on wet or oily surfaces.
  • Do not ride or skate in the street or on busy sidewalks.
  • Wear bright clothing so others can see you.
  • Always ride or skate on the right hand side or sidewalks, bike paths and trails.
  • Always pass people on the left and remember to yell “Passing on the left,” before passing.
  • Keep your equipment in good condition by checking it often and changing worn wheels and brakes.
  • Be careful going downhill. If a hill is steep, walk to the bottom carrying your scooter, skateboard or skates.
  • Do not ride or skate at night.
  • Obey local signs and laws and ride or skate only where you are allowed.
  • Pay attention to what you and others around you are doing at all times.

If you fall:

  • Try to roll in the direction you are falling.
  • Try to land on the softest parts of your body.

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Skiing and Snowboarding

Skiing and snowboarding are two great winter sports that you can enjoy with your family. Here are some tips to help you have fun and be safe on the slopes:

  • Skiing and snowboarding are not easy sports, so be in good condition.
  • Take skiing or snowboarding lessons.
  • Practice falling. When you fall, do not try to get up until you have stopped moving.
  • Don’t go skiing or snowboarding unless you have an adult watching you.
  • Review the safety tips of skiing and snowboarding with your parents.
  • Use gear that fits properly and is in good condition.
  • Wear a helmet made for skiing and snowboarding. Make sure it fits so it does not move.
  • When snowboarding, also use wrist guards and knee pads.
  • Wear sunglasses and goggles.
  • Use sunscreen and lip balm to prevent sunburn.
  • Dress to stay warm and dry. Wear many light layers. Show your parents what you plan to wear. Be sure to include:
    • Winter underwear
    • Ski pants – no jeans
    • Warm top
    • Sweater
    • Socks
    • Jacket
    • Gloves
    • Hat (If you wear one, make sure it fits easily under your helmet.)
  • Only ski and snowboard in areas you feel comfortable with. Skiers and snowboarders get hurt when they are going too fast and lose control.
  • Drink lots of liquids and eat healthy food through the day.
  • Take plenty of rest breaks.
  • Stop when you get tired or cold.
  • Learn the National Ski Patrol skiing rules.

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Soccer

Playing soccer is fun. But getting hurt while playing soccer isn’t. Preventing injuries is not as hard as you think. In fact, it’s easy as long as you remember some important safety tips.
Here are some important tips to help you have fun and be safe:

Talk to Your Parents and Coaches

  • Know and play the rules of the game. Not only will this help prevent you from getting hurt, it also will help you play better.
  • Never play if you are hurt or feeling sick. Tell a parent, coach or teacher that you are sick.
  • Ask an adult what you can do to get into shape to play soccer. When you are in good shape, you have less chance of getting hurt.
  • Wear the Right Gear
  • Know the right safety gear to wear and make sure it fits right.
  • Safety gear includes: shin guards and mouth guard.
  • Play It Safe
  • Make sure you drink lots of water.
  • Wear sunscreen and a hat to prevent sunburn.
  • Never climb on the net or the goal frame.

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Swimming

It’s fun to swim, but never swim without an adult around to watch you. Even if you are a great swimmer, you should always have an adult around for extra safety.

  • Never swim during a storm or when there is lightning.
  • Never swim alone. Always use the buddy system.
  • Swim only in safe, guarded areas.
  • Know how deep the water is.
  • Don’t dive or jump into water unless an adult has checked the depth.
  • Don’t run around a pool, push people in or dunk other swimmers.
  • Don’t chew gum or eat food while swimming, diving or playing in the water.
  • Take swimming lessons.
  • Be extra careful in the ocean and don’t run into the waves, which can knock you down.
  • Rivers are very dangerous for swimming because of their strong currents. It is best to stay out of them.     

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For more information:

503 418-5666
safety@ohsu.edu

Location:

Doernbecher Children's Hospital Lobby
700 SW Campus Drive Portland, OR 97239

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