Reducing the Risk of Injuries from Falls
Updated: Feb 20, 2019
Did you know... Over 68,000 kids in Australia find themselves in hospital each year due to an unintentional injury?
Children injuring themselves due to an accidental fall, accounts for a large percentage of those hospital admissions with one of the most common injuries being a fracture to the forearm - children put their arms out straight to try and break their fall which is a very natural instinct.
So does this mean we should we stop children from playing on the playgrounds or climbing a tree when the mood strikes? Absolutely not! Falling down sometimes is what being a kid is all about and while we can’t save them from every bump and scratch, we hope we might be able to save you a trip to the emergency room.
Many unintentional injuries are preventable by teaching children how to land safely (just like we do at Eclipse!). Safety is paramount in a sport like gymnastics which is why from the moment the children walk through the door they are taught about safe landings.
There are a few different ways we teach children to fall. You can also encourage your children to use these types of landings at home or in the playground:
The Ideal Landing - We always encourage children to first make the best effort they can to land on their feet in a ‘landing shape’. Children should bend their knees slightly to absorb the force and have their arms out in front to help with their balance.
Landing from a Backwards Fall
- Pull arms in to ‘give themselves a hug’, and roll onto their back. This is ALWAYS the first option we want children to use if they are falling backwards and is one of the most effective ways to prevent a broken arm.
- If a child does still happen to put their hands down on the floor if they fall, we teach children to always have their fingers facing forwards or pointing towards their toes so that their arms will not lock out straight when they fall to the ground.
Landing from a Forwards Fall
- Absorb fall with arms by keeping them slightly bent and lowering self to the ground.
- Tuck head in and roll forwards onto back (this technique is used mostly in higher levels with fast rotating skills such as somersaults.)
In addition to teaching children how to land safely, many studies have proven that children who take part in gymnastics (even a one hour class a week) have a higher bone density than those who don't. A higher bone density will also help reduce the risk of broken bones from falls which will benefit them not only as children but through into their adult life.
Give your child the best start to life with a program at Eclipse! Find more information about Kindergym, General Gym, Home School Programs and more HERE
And until next time, Happy Handstanding!
References: kidsafevic.com.au, usagym.org