Safety & Risk Management

 

Contact:     Bion Fite

                safety@halifaxayso.org

                 

Insurance

Parents and volunteers should know that they can claim from the AYSO policy any uninsured medical costs they might have incurred for accidents related to AYSO. Just contact Bion Fite at safety@halifaxayso.org.

 Official AYSO information and a downloadable SAI Claim Form may be found by clicking AYSO Insurance Claim Form.

Practice Safety!

The same rules and commonsense apply to players taking part in practice sessions as for matches. In particular shin guards MUST be worn, as must appropriate clothing and shoes. There is no relaxation of the safety requirements concerning splints, casts, jewelry etc. Board Members are authorized to stop a practice session completely, or to require that a player cease participation. Persistent failure by a coach (or assistant coach) to follow AYSO guidelines is cause for his or her suspension or removal from the AYSO program.

Goal Safety

You have nothing to fear from a quiet, unassuming portable soccer goal, right? Its importance as the focus of a child's goal-kicking effort outweighs any possible danger, right? WRONG!

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has reported 26 deaths and hundreds of injuries since 1979 resulting from soccer goal accidents. Most of these injuries occur when children climb on top of an unsecured goal, causing it to either break from the strain (in the case of many homemade goals) or simply flip over onto an unsuspecting victim. You only need to review some of the descriptions of injuries and deaths addressed in the CPSC report to become saddened by this easily-preventable problem.

The bottom line is this: Goal safety is everyone's job and your volunteers and parents need to be aware of the dangers.

The problem with goals is their shape. There is nothing in front of the goal to prevent its tipping forward. The only way is to keep the back from lifting up.  

Many portable goals are not professionally manufactured, and use the same heavy materials for the front face (goal mouth), back and bottom. Using lighter materials for the front and heavier materials for the bottom can help reduce the risk of goal tipping.

Still, even when they're properly built, securely anchoring the bottom and back of portable goals is the most important step you can take to prevent soccer goal injuries.

Keep Kids Hydrated (During the Game)

A number of factors place young athletes at an increased risk for dehydration and various heat illnesses. First, the higher energy expenditure of young athletes means that they produce more metabolic heat. In addition, young athletes don't sweat as efficiently as older athletes and thus cannot cool their bodies as effectively.  Finally, young athletes are not as diligent about drinking fluids and their body core temperature during dehydration tends to increase faster.  For these reasons it is essential that young athletes be encouraged to drink frequently even when they are not thirsty.

Research studies have shown that providing a cooled and flavored beverage produces greater fluid consumption among children and helps prevent dehydration.  Parents should make sure that athletes arrive at practice sessions, games or competitions fully hydrated.  Coaches should enforce drink pauses every 15-20 minutes even when athletes do not feel thirsty.  Parents, coaches and the athletes themselves should watch for the warning signs of dehydration:

  • ·          Thirst
  • ·          Irritability
  • ·          Headache
  • ·          Weakness
  • ·          Dizziness
  • ·          Cramps
  • ·          Nausea
  • ·          Decreased performance
     

Haste is your worst enemy!

Nowadays, it's normal to see a harried parent or guardian rushing to drop their children at the local soccer field for practice and games. While punctuality is a virtue, rushing - and subsequent carelessness - certainly is not.

Adults aren't the only people who fall victim to haste. Kids love to run through parking lots and in between cars in their haste to start playing, forgetting to look both ways. That's why it's important to take a strong safety in the streets stance to prevent parking lot accidents.