New Orleans orthopedic surgeon Dr. Richard Meyer advises that sports medicine doesn’t always have to be applied to just the field or the gymnasium. For kids of all ages – including the really little ones – the playground is where it all starts.
Injury prevention at all levels of athletic competition is important, including the level that our smallest athletes participate in – a sport we usually call “play time.” If your watch your kids closely, you will realize that they are actually engaged in all sorts of fun little competitions as they climb, slide, jump, hang, swing, balance and twirl.
But before you let your kids run off and climb all over the equipment at the park, your New Orleans orthopedic surgeon would like to share some information that may very well keep your kids safe this spring and summer.
The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons has distributed this checklist so that you as a parent can inspect the playground prior to letting your children use it. Most of this is common sense, but sometimes we need a little reminder, or checklist, so that things don’t fall through cracks – especially our children!
When inspecting the playground equipment, ask the following questions:
- Are any pieces of playground equipment missing supports, anchors or footings?
- Are any supports, anchors or footings damaged or loose?
- Are there sharp edges or points on any of the equipment?
- Has the wood started to splinter or rot?
- Are surface materials missing or damaged?
- Are there any missing, loose or damaged nuts and bolts on the equipment?
- Are any seats broken?
- Is any of the metal bent, rusted or warped?
- Are bolts or tubes missing their protective end caps?
- Are swing hangers and chains broken or worn?
- Are hooks, rings or links misshapen or deformed?
- Are there any broken, missing or loose steps?
- Are there broken, missing, or loose guard and handrails?
- Are any ladder rungs missing, broken or loose?
- Is there glass, cans or trash on the ground in the area?
- Can you see tree roots or rocks sticking up that could cause a child to trip and fall?
If the answer to any of these questions is “yes,” the playground may not be safe for your child. So don’t chance it! Don’t be afraid to make a list aol desktop gold software of potential issues and report the playground’s problems to your local park or school officials.
For more information regarding injury prevention, call the office of New Orleans orthopedic surgeon Dr. Richard Meyer today to schedule a consultation.