High school sports are changing. Kids are specializing in one sport earlier, and that can set them up for injuries.
Often times this can cause an imbalance in strength and joint range of motion. Sports related injuries are the second highest leading cause of emergency room visits for kids and teens.
Mercy Health has a special Saturday Sports Injury Clinic. While any weekend warrior can go, it is also geared to treat school aged athletes that may have gotten injured during the week playing their sport. Zane Zaborowski is an outside linebacker for Perrysburg. The sophomore took a bad hit to the back of the helmet during Friday night’s game against Whitmer. “It was kind of more like a dizziness. I just played it off just like any other hit,” says Zaborowski, “but after the game, something wasn’t right I had a headache and dizziness.”
So Zane’s mother brought him to the Mercy Health Sports Clinic on Monday to be evaluated for a concussion by Mercy Health Sports Medicine Specialist Dr. Jason Smith D.O. “Football today isn’t what it was in the 80’s and 90’s,” says Smith. “There’s a higher number of injuries for a dual factor. Number one, we’re getting earlier sports specialization. But we’re also having a higher intensity. So these kids are better at a younger age.”
Possible head injuries like Zane’s are taken very seriously and evaluated very carefully. They have to be cleared using a concussion protocol return to play that has been set up by the State of Ohio. D.J. Greenhill is a parent and a former coach says he evaluates whether his kids need to be seen by a doctor using one specific criteria. “There’s a difference being sore and being in pain. And if you’re in pain obviously you want to see the doctor,” says Greenhill.