As summer ends and slips quickly into fall, our kids start to prepare for back to school. This includes getting back-to-school supplies, getting back into a regular routine, and for many, preparing to get back into sports after a summer’s rest.

For girls ages 8-12, this change in season is also an excellent time to re-evaluate their movement skills. During the summer, this age group can grow a lot compared to their male counter parts. When these girls grow quickly, their bodies and brains have to work extra hard to coordinate movements they were able to do effortlessly just a few months ago. To help your daughter prepare for sport after a summer growth spurt and prevent injuries, there are a couple things to keep in mind.

A dynamic warmup is an important part of sporting activity and for any age group, but especially for girls who have just gone through a growth spurt. A longer warmup before activity to allow the body to get ready for the physical demands about to be placed on it is a good idea. Warmup for this age group should focus on warming up the muscles and doing some sport-specific movements.

This time of year is also great to re-evaluate your daughter’s movement. As the body is working to coordinate its new size, sometimes basic movement patterns are lost. These basic movements include things like being able to touch their toes, do a proper squat, jump without their knees touching, as well as a few others. If there are any faulty movement patterns, this may leave your child at risk for injuries such as knee pain, shin splints, or low back pain.

If you have any concerns about how your daughter is moving after a summer growth spurt, take your daughter into your local chiropractor, physiotherapist, or kinesiologist for a movement evaluation. By utilizing a little preventative care, your daughter can have a safe successful transition back into fall sports!

 

Dr. Katelyn Westerlund is a chiropractor at The Ridge Spine and Sport Centre and a member of the FAME committee. She can be reached at kwesterlund@ridgespinesport.com