Back to school also means back to practice for thousands of student athletes and coaches. The American Red Cross has training and resources available for people to learn how to treat a variety of emergencies and injuries that may occur throughout the sports season.
“School and neighborhood coaches, athletes and spectators should know how to help prevent and respond to common sports injuries such as strains and sprains, fractures, cuts and concussions,” said Kelly Hudson, Regional Communications Officer for the American Red Cross of West Michigan.
Safe Kids Worldwide reports that every 25 seconds a child is hurt playing sports and that more than 1 million emergency room visits are made due to sports injuries each year. Sports injuries account for about 20 percent of all injury-related emergency room visits for young people, according to their study.
Red Cross has developed a number of resources for everyone involved in sports and recreational activities:
First Aid, Health and Safety for Coaches is an online program for teens and adults who coach at any age level. Developed with the National Federation of State High School Associations, this course covers first aid skills including breathing emergencies and injuries to muscles, bones and joints. Coaches are encouraged to take a CPR/AED course as well.
Family First Aid and CPR is an online course for those not required to have OSHA-compliant certification. Participants learn how to treat cardiac, breathing and first aid emergencies until help arrives. Pediatric modules are also available.
American Red Cross First Aid App is a free app for smart phones and tablets. It gives users instant access to information on how to handle the most common first aid situations.
Information on courses and additional resources are available at redcross.org. A variety of Red Cross apps can be found in the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for Android by searching for American Red Cross, or by going to redcross.org/mobileapps.
“Heat can be especially hazardous to anyone exercising or playing outdoors this time of year. People should avoid scheduling workouts and exercise during the hottest times of the day,” added Hudson. “Take frequent breaks and stay hydrated.”
For more information on how to give, get trained or get involved with the American Red Cross, visit redcross.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS.