Youth Sport Health and Safety Institute Kicks Off Campaign

Oct 07, 2011

The National Youth Sports Health & Safety Institute has been created to provide comprehensive research, education, recommendations, guidelines, and policy to enhance the experience, development, health, and safety of children and adolescents involved in sports and physical activity.

The National Youth Sports Health & Safety Institute has been created to provide comprehensive research, education, recommendations, guidelines, and policy to enhance the experience, development, health, and safety of children and adolescents involved in sports and physical activity. The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) formed the organization in partnership with Sanford Health, an integrated health care system based in Fargo, North Dakota, and Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

More than 90% of Americans think that sports participation is important for children and adolescents and that more needs to be done to ensure the health and safety of those who are involved in sports activity, according a new poll conducted by Kelton Research. Their concerns have been fueled by reports of heat illness, concussion, undiagnosed heart conditions, and other issues that affect athletes of all ages. As a result, the institute will initially focus on 4 key areas:

• Mild traumatic brain injury and concussion.

• Heat illness and injury.

• Overuse/overload and injury risk.

• Clinical conditions that are unique to youth athletic populations, such as type 1 diabetes mellitus, eating disorders, and sickle cell trait.

Guidance for the institute will be provided by a leadership board composed of recognized professionals with extensive clinical and scientific expertise, a passion for youth sports, and an understanding of the health and safety challenges that young athletes face. Information, links, and evidence-based resources for youth athletes and their parents, medical professionals, and others who are involved in youth sports are available on the institute's new Web site, http://www.nyshsi.org.

For more information, visit the ACSM Web site at http://www.acsm.org. Or, contact the organization at American College of Sports Medicine, PO Box 1440, Indianapolis, IN 46206-1440; telephone: (317) 637-9200; fax: (317) 634-7817.

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