Soccer is a very physical game involving lots of running with sudden stops; a ball traveling long distances at incredible velocities and plenty of chances for violent collisions. Though, as a whole, soccer is a very safe sport to participate in, any activity with similar game play can lead to a multitude of minor injuries and potentially even some more severe ones.
There are many factors that can increase the chances of injury - like players not having warmed up properly, wet or slippery field conditions, players not paying attention or players and coaches simply ignoring the rules of safety.
Any time that there is an increased chance for a participant in any activity to become injured it's important that someone on staff be properly trained in administering first aid, in a sport that's as active and competitive as soccer, it's important that everyone be trained in first aid in a case where multiple injuries may occur and coaches or staff need assistance in caring for the injured players.
Here are some of the common injuries associated with the sport of soccer, many of which can be tended to with basic first aid principals and training.
Ankle sprains are one of the most common injuries associated with the sport of soccer. High speed running with quick and frequent stops and angular cuts is almost a recipe for a sprained ankle.
Muscle strains and Pulls
These can come from players who haven't warmed up properly, from attempting an uncommon or unusually high kick or from losing ones footing on a slippery playing field. Strains and pulls, depending upon severity can be excruciatingly painful.
In addition to the feet, soccer players are allowed to play the ball with their heads. A ball traveling at a high rate of speed and covering forty or so yards of playing field and impacting a players head can do a bit more than just have the player seeing stars momentarily. Also when two players go up for a ball in the air, the chances increase for an accidental head but, which is also a good chance for a concussion.
Muscle cramps are common in any sport where a good deal of running takes place, and although they aren't very serious the pain associated can be reasonably high from the onset through the time the cramp has run its course.
The aforementioned list comprises the most common injuries that occur on the soccer field, few of which are very serious and even less of which are life threatening. The most serious injuries listed above are the concussion and the ankle sprain, both of which will most likely require the player who suffers them to miss a few games, but unless either is unusually severe the player would likely be back on the field in a week to ten days. Proper first aid training will help to identify the signs of each of the injuries listed above and let the proper course of treatment begin to be followed, whether it be ice, massage, elevation or stabilization.
Just like in any sport where there is potential for impact, there is a chance that some more serious injuries will occur on the soccer field. Any time two players collide at high speed or a misplaced kick from one player makes contact with another there is a chance for things like broken bones or deep lacerations to occur.
In the event a situation like this should occur, the players who are properly trained in first aid can begin to administer immediate care while waiting for emergency personnel to respond. If immediate action isn't taken in one of these more serious injury situations, a more permanent injury could potentially occur. First aid training will teach players how to properly stop bleeding, how to administer CPR and how to tend to individuals who may be in shock from the severe pain of suffering broken bones.
A team may play twenty games in a season without a single injury occurring, but if even one injury occurs on the field, the proper first aid training can make a world of difference in a positive outcome to the situation.
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