Sports and orthopedic specialists have found kids to be the most susceptible to debilitating physical ailments given their underdeveloped musculoskeletal systems. As statistics would reveal, there are about 3 million of them hospitalized yearly for sports-related injuries. As a result, health care professionals strongly advocate the use of stretching exercises prior to engaging in any physical activity so as to minimize the risks of hospitalization. And they emphasize the importance of parents, guardians, coaches and physical education teachers getting involved so that they can be in control of the children's physical fitness as well as mindful of the rigorous demands of sports.
To begin, adults can teach kids on how to do a toe touch stretch as they prepare for a game. This is actually one of the most basic warm up exercises a person can do to relax his joints and muscles and make them ready for use. This type of workout aims to condition the calves and hamstrings and is advisable for activities that involve a lot of running. What you need to do is ask the child to bend over and reach his toes, from a standing position, with his feet positioned together. As an alternative, you could also ask the child to sit with his legs stretched out and then have him bend forward to touch his toes, or as far as he is comfortable. Have him hold the position for 15 seconds before he relaxes. And then get him to repeat it for at least three sets.
Afterwards, you should ask the child to do neck, shoulders and arm circles to loosen up the joints of his upper extremities. These will be necessary for games that entail a lot of throwing, shooting and hitting. Have him look towards the ceiling and then roll his head around in a circle motion, clockwise, for a full rotation. And then, get him to do the same thing towards the other direction. Encourage him to do it slowly so that the neck is not strained. After 16 counts, let the child move on his shoulders and have him rotate them forward-down in a full rotation. Command him to change direction every after six counts and have him do 12 counts. Finally, let him stretch out his arms to the side and then start moving it slowly in a small circular pattern, transitioning to a large pattern after four counts and then back to small again at the end of each 12 count set. After 3 sets each, he should be more than ready to do the child's pose.
This yoga position is a great method for getting a full body stretch. What your kid needs to do is kneel down with his knees apart and his feet touching, and from there, bend down until his forehead reaches the floor. Afterwards, have him place his arms on the side, with palms facing upward and ask him to hold the position for 15 minutes. While doing so, encourage him to take 3 to 5 deep breathes. Afterwards, have him jog in place for 15 minutes before he finally gets into the game.
On top of these, there other warm exercises you can employ to get your child in tip-top shape. But it is important, especially if you have a budding athlete, to keep regular appointments with sports and orthopedic specialists so that you can pre-empt any future casualties.