Youth Sports plays an essential element in helping to keeping our children healthy and fit. It helps in the fight against obesity and plays a crucial role in decreasing the risk of heart disease, diabetes, colon cancer, high blood pressure, premature death and other ailments.
In addition to those health benefits, it can also help to form core life values and skills like teamwork, respect, discipline and much more that they will need as they become an active part of our workforce or as our future business and community leaders. Having our children participate in organized youth sports can help to strengthen their future and the future of our entire community.
However, to achieve these goals and benefits our children must have a productive, positive and safe youth sports experience. Nationally, over 3.5 million children are treated for sports related injuries and there is a 70% dropout rate of youth athletes by the time they reach high school every year.
Not only will these children lose out on the benefits and experiences themselves but in the future when they have kids of their own they may also refrain them from participating in sports related activities thus depriving future generations from the experience's and benefit's sports can offer.
Reasons attributing to the number of injuries, the dropout rate and why many children don’t participate in sports activity include (but are not limited to): Pressure to perform and win so the sport becomes no longer fun; Improper Introduction & Development or Lack Of; Overzealous parents and coaches; Potentially life-changing and life-threatening safety issues such as abuse, brain injuries, overuse injuries, sudden cardiac arrest, heat illness, genetic disorders, MRSA, cervical-spine fractures and other injuries and illnesses; and much more...
Unfortunately, many coaches and parents choose to focus on getting their child to the next level or on the hopes they earn a college scholarship through sports but not on the other benefits. The fact is that only 30% of kids who start sports before age 10 will go on to play in High School and less than 5% of them will even make it to college on a sports scholarship. Of those the kids who do play college, less than 1% of them will make it to the Professional Ranks.
Our Foundation was created with overall major goal to increase the awareness and prevention of sports related safety issues plus so much more. We want to decrease the number of injuries and/or deaths attributive to these safety issues, increase access to sports related activity and increase the positive experiences of our local youth in sports.
We are in the process of implementing several programs that are geared towards teaching coaches, parents and children on the recognition and prevention of all safety issues, not just one or two while putting perspective back on the primary benefits of sports related activity.
For example, some of these programs include a plan that will implement teaching coaches, players and parents life-saving techniques such as CPR, AED and Basic First Aid and another one to provide All-Inclusive Pre-Participation Physical Exams (PPPE) that include a complete child and family medical history screen, physical exam, pre-participation neurocognitive testing like the Baseline ImPACT test and any combination of an ECG, Limited Echoes or an MRI of the Heart testing.
Coaches who coach in school sports programs in Nevada are required to receive a background check and training in CPR, AED and sports safety however these are not a requirement for coaches who coach in many recreational leagues and teams (of which there are hundreds of across Southern Nevada). Very few leagues require background checks or provide mandatory sports safety training, those who do may receive limited training but there is no record or true transparency of who gets what and how often... Many coaches, at all levels, also do not receive learning on the importance of their role in mentoring our youth and positive coaching.
For example, we were recently informed by a local league that does do coach background checks that of the 30 who applied to coach with their league only 9 passed! Even scarier, all of them currently coach on teams in other various leagues!
Children who participate in school sponsored sports programs must get a PPPE however school required PPPE's stop at Child/Family Medical Screening and the Physical Exam, they do not include ECG, Limited Echoes or an MRI of the Heart. Not all children in high school sports get a baseline ImPACT test and with middle schools and most recreational programs they aren’t required.
Most parents and children are never formally introduced to the variety of sports safety issues (they may know of one or two but rarely know of all). They rarely know the signs and symptoms to recognize most issues until it is too late and/or they lack the knowledge to help prevent them. Most also don't know the basics of life saving techniques such as CPR/AED that they could use if a coach or anyone else around is not trained or is not present during a life-threatening emergency. Many also do not realize what role they themselves play in providing a positive sports experience for all our local youth.
Issues, like those mentioned in the beginning of our introduction, face our youth sports community every day. Luckily with proper awareness, training and oversight these issues can be recognized, reduced or even eliminated.
We know we could never prevent every single issue from happening ever again but if we could prevent just one life from being negatively impacted or worst, lost, is it not worth the effort? If we could all come together to be the difference for our children, even if from behind the scenes, we could greatly impact so many other areas of our children's lives and the community as a whole.
To help us accomplish our mission we are seeking to create strategic partnerships and collaborative efforts with: local city, county and state governments and their officials; local medical professionals and facilities; local youth sports organizations; other non-profits and community organizations that serve local youth; local small businesses and corporations; and the general public.
We hope you see the need and good in what we are trying to accomplish and are asking, and hoping, if you would be interested helping us to further develop and implement our programs or in providing some resources (such as knowledge, manpower, locations, tools, etc...) for these programs. We are open to new and innovative ideas on how people like you can collaborate with us on any number of things, even if it's not listed.
Pardon the pun, but the ball is now in your court... You now know who we are and what we are trying to do. If you would like to join us, we'd love to have you! Contact us, we are more than willing to meet and discuss anything with you. We'll Be Waiting...
The LVSportz Foundation
|Physicals/Heart Screens Given||0||2||0||1|
|Baseline Concussion Tests Given||0||0||0||0|
|Coach/Team Moms CPR/AED Certified||0||0||0||7|
|Kids Trained in Hands-Only CPR||0||0||5||6|
|Available A.E.D. Loaners||0||0||0||1|
|Free Sports Clinics Held||0||0||0||4|