Medical Minute: Positive Pushing Sports

Parents push! And coaches push! The kids try harder and harder. The result, sometimes a win but all too often, burned out minds and bruised bodies!

Austin Pratt has been hitting it hard since he was 11.

"I love the sport; I love to hit!"

His mom Donna has been there for every touchdown, fumble and injury. She's seen firsthand how parents affect the game.

Donna says, "I've seen where the parents are standing up and telling their child that they've scored a touchdown, but there was a mistake in between their catching the ball and their bringing it down to the goal post."

Forty million kids are playing organized sports. Pressure from parents, coaches and the kids is to be better younger pushing 70 percent to give up sports by age 13.

Tina Syer, Associate Director of the Positive Coaching Alliance, "When those kids were asked why were you dropping out, why did you quit, they said, 'it's not fun anymore.'"

Tina Syer of the Positive Coaching Alliance says the biggest mistake parents make is focusing on the win.

Don't ask: Who won the game?

Ask: What was your best play of the game? What do you want to work on for next time? What's the best thing the team achieved today?

Tyler Fisher feels the pressure to be the best. He works out every day after school, every weekend, and plays soccer year 'round.

His dedication to the game is taking a toll on his body.

Tyler says, "It's a sharp pain whenever I push off on the foot that hurt."

Dr. Richard Lehman, an orthopedic surgeon, says, "You're seeing much more injuries, not just based on the time spent, but the difficulty and the level of intensity that these athletes are performing."

He's seeing the same injuries in kids that professionals suffer.

Dr. Lehman stresses playing through the pain could cause you to stop playing for good.


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