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Athletes and sports have been around for as long as anyone can remember. Youth sports on the other hand have been on an extreme rise especially with the childhood obesity epidemic the World is facing at the moment. Athletic training has been one of the most positive impacts today that has the ability to essentially get rid of this epidemic our society has brought into existence itself ; but sadly the way it affects children and adolescents has a little too much controversy to really put a stop to it. However, narrowing down some reasons that this is an issue that moreover stands and comes down to discipline; with sports and regular training comes proper teaching and instruction to become a better athlete or to even learn the sport and its rules in all its entirely. This proper teaching technique is called athletic training.
Athletic training is and can be used for any sport while at the same time it is graciously, consistently, and constantly being used today and not just for sports or athletes but for personal reasons as well. There are plenty of different levels that athletic training vary upon, whether you are training as a professional or just plain training to have fun, although that most of the time it is used for professional training on athletes, it is a a very diversified tool that tons of people around the World relies on. This industry has grown since 2006 into a multi-billion dollar grand industry that is still successful today that is not only used for sports, but for weight loss in obese children as well (Muth,2006).
Nevertheless this training process can get very dangerous, especially with children and adolescents. Children are constantly being pushed to break boundaries when sometimes they need a break, and in many studies shown, rigorous athletic training for these young adolescents is harmful. Children as young as 4 years old are being pushed to their absolute limit to obtain moreover a certain amount of athletic progress at an early age(ITV News, 2016). This problem is prominent all over the world, however; it is not discussed by the public or media as an important issue that needs to be handled. Parents are known to push their kids to be the best, but little do they know the many harmful effects that the rigorous training can start causing their child, this includes when their own child gets hurt as well, are the parents oblivious to the consequences? There are numerous pros and cons that can and should be discussed about athletic training in children, but of course in the end it is what’s best for the adolescents and their overall health. There are high limits to what children and adolescents can do when it comes to athletic training, and it can be very harmful causing more injuries as well as, psychological and health problems, but with proper regulation athletic training can cause a significant and positive effect on a child’s life.
In many circumstances athletic trainers get in and over their head with trying to train these kids to their limits , yet they pay absolutely no mind or attention to the actual outstanding limits young adults and children very much do have. With this being said, the trainers can cause more injuries and muscle overuse, proving here another limit to why child obesity is on its rise. Statistically shown, more and more adolescents are excessively experiencing exorbitant injuries from overuse of muscles, joints, and not to mention growth plates that are slowly but surely being damaged during this process ,furthermore at the same time the proper care or attention is not being taken to the extent it should be merely to ensure that these things do not happen. Sports are good and healthy, but they can become unhealthy if expectations get too high or kids are not monitored closely enough. In fact, “when the emphasis on athletic participation and performance becomes all-consuming and causes injuries that can sometimes compromise a child’s future” (Brody, 2010).
It is noticed that athletic trainers can get out of hand when dealing with their trainees because, they want them to do well and succeed but are they really doing what is best for the child? Most children are so young when this happen that they do not have a voice or if they are old enough they are afraid to speak up, and “it is essential to make sure these junior athletes receive safe, proper instruction to prevent injury and ensure proper mechanics for growing bodies”(Hatcher, 2017). When children are severely injured at a young age it can cause detrimental effects on their growing body or even stunt their growth. The worst part is that “every year more than 3.5 million children under 15 require medical treatment for sports injuries, nearly half of which are the result of a simple overuse”(Brody, 2010). Injuries can lead to other problems such as not working out again or even depression. In a recent study it was found that levels of exercise promotes not only good health physically but emotionally within oneself and their relationship with their families(Field, 2001).
Unfortunately however when you are hurt you cannot do these things. Athletic training can be tough and challenge the student, but there are boundaries that the trainer needs to have to know when enough is enough to avoid future injuries. Certain levels of exercise promotes not only good health physically but emotionally within oneself and their relationship with their families(Haley, 2015). Injuries are not a joke and should be taken very seriously, because they can impact your life in a negative way if you are constantly being pushed past what your body can take. This effect from athletic training should be regulated with some sort of law, because it is getting way to out of hand.
Another effect that athletic training has on children and adolescents are psychological and health issues. These issues can develop when an athlete gets injured and stem off into more issues. When someone is injured they can not do the thing they were able to do. They are now hindered, temporarily handicapped from the things that they love doing but also not exercising. When you are hurt you are not supposed to do much because, you do not want to hurt yourself again but many junior athletes do not care about that they just want to be back in their sport as soon as possible. This is known to b e true through personal experience and being seen first hand time and time again on the football team. These behaviors were not learned on the athlete’s own, but developed at a young age by the athletic trainer pushing the junior athlete way to hard. In fact, there was a study done on gymnast showing their torque connecters that changed and affected their musculotendinous stiffness (Dontan, 2013). These neurological adaptations are extremely advanced, and these skills are being developed in young students, so they can be pushed harder. They athletic trainers in the article wanted to increase motion range so they could “better their student”, but it was questioned who the athletic trainer was really doing it for. It was found that light resistance and controlled movements are best and most suitable for children and adolescents (Mayo Clinic, 2015).
This study shows what’s good for children, but most athletic trainers do not stick to this plan. Such rigorous and competitive training causes sportsmanship issues, excessive fitness and even drug abuse in the future. A child should at least be 6 years of age, and due to all the hours put in it can lead a child to having mental health problems. It cases these junior athletes in the future to not play sports as a team but for themselves so they can be better just like how they were taught to do. This extreme training messes with a child’s brain at a young age. However there is some good to this bad. With athletic training when done properly it can have very great effects on a child’s developing life including: decrease in obesity, positive correlations between relationships and academics, and a decrease in high-risk health behaviors in the future. Exercise is crucial especially in today’s world.
Obesity has been a real problem in the United States especially for young adolescents. Many efforts have been put in place to decrease this terrible disease affecting the world, however, athletic training seems to have the biggest and most positive effect. When having someone to train you, you are building a relationship with this person developing better communication skills and becoming more healthy at the same time. When a child is struggling with an issue they need someone there for them in order to get through their issue and athletic trainers can almost act as a support system as well. Support is what you need in an athletic trainer and support has been found countless time to affect people who are struggling or just want to be better at something in such a positive way. No one is breaking them down or pushing them to the extreme, but working on challenging exercises or training that will help them learn and grow as a person in the future. With these new found relationships there seems to be a positive correlation between relationships and academics. This is important because academics include a child’s future and it is shown and studies have proven that “students who are enrolled in physical education classes are spending more time performing physical activities… were less depressed and had a higher grade point average than did students with a low level of exercise”(Field, 2001).
The brain is a muscle that needs to get worked daily in order to grow and develop and with exercising it challenges you. Allows you to think and problem solve. To make decisions that will make you win your sport or if you are losing weight, to push through to lose the weight. Academics and relationships are a big part of a young adolescents life and athletic training can really benefit them. Not to mention the decrease in high risk health behaviors in the future. Time and time again in the news you hear of very young adults passing away when they still had a full life ahead of him. Blood sugar, blood pressure, weight, and so much more can all be regulated and controlled with an athletic trainer at a young age so that it can be more manageable and controllable when older. Athletic trainers provide you with the steps necessary that would benefit your lifestyle or allow adaptations of the steps to make it your own to be successful in the future with your health. In conclusion, there have been many effects on children and adolescents when it comes to athletic training.
Research has shown it can be very good for the young adolescent, but research also shows it can be bad. Athletic training has a lot of different factors that can affect the child depending on the scenario. I would say overall people generally like athletic training and have a positive experience with it due to the relationships being built as discussed in the previous paragraphs. Many people just want support not just athletes but adolescents who are struggling to lose weight as well. Training with children in not only sports but in life aspects will cause such a great impact on the future. As also discussed in the previous paragraphs this exercise can help in school. School is the future and it’s great to know that you can better yourself at a young age by just exercising. Not only will this help your health in the future but it will affect how you learn and develop as a person. This is important because as a child your developmental stage is crucial, and if you impacted in a negative way as a child this could severely affect your behaviors in the future. Health is one of the most serious issues that people don’t think can be affected easily, however, athletic training when done correctly can provide great guidance not only as a child but as an adult as well. That’s why the industry is growing so much because it truly does affect your life. Kids are starting so young before the age of 6 (which is not recommended) but because parents want to help their children and aid their future and developmental skills.
Athletic training as also discussed can be great in moderation, however there needs to be a better regulation process. Trainers should be held accountable when pushing their athletes to hard and causing them to get injured. The child gets hurt because they are doing what the trainer specifically told them to do, and children don’t really know how to speak up for themselves if they do not want to do something. With that injuries are very serious and when athletes are not taken care of properly it ends up hurting their future and their health in the long run. Injuries as a child can stunt growth or cause other health issues which is why trainers need to value their students and make sure they are challenging them but also allowing them to be safe at the same time. Decrease in high-risk health problems was also discussed in the previous paragraphs as a positive effector. This was discussed due to the major obesity problem in the United states. Personal training has had a positive impact on this issue by allowing the guidance and the tools to build healthy habits as a young child. Even with all the efforts in place personal training has had the best impact because of it’s specific one on one attention to the young athlete. The trainer can specifically teach them specific to their body what will work and not work. These steps can then be taken and manipulated to fit their lifestyle as an adult to affect their health in a positive way. Athletic training was noticed to have more long term effects than short term.
All the effects talked about: injuries, decrease in high risk health problems, academic success, decrease in obesity, and possible psychological issues; they all develop or start off affecting the child in a small way and grow to impacting the child in it’s future adult life. Which makes sense because things that impact you as a child seem to carry and develop into your growing years. So if a child is affected and has positive experience with their athletic trainer they will most likely be affected in the future by having good grades, great communication skills, being a support system and living a healthy lifestyle. However, those children that did not have a positive experience, were severely injured and pushed to hard are going to be affected in a negative way with struggling with mental health issues, stress, and maybe even decreasing their chances of a healthy lifestyle.
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