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“There is a myth that children are less vulnerable to sports injuries. The truth is young athletes are more vulnerable to injury than adults because of open growth plates and developing bones and joints. The medical science for athletes age 14 and under is a specialty all its own.”

Research Library


  • American College of Sports Medicine
  • Nationwide Children’s Hospital
  • Stanford Medicine | Children’s Health


  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • National Institutes of Health
  • President’s Council on Sports, Fitness & Nutrition | Science Board
  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services


NATA‘s mission is to represent, engage and foster the continued growth and development of the athletic training profession and athletic trainers as unique healthcare providers.

Public Policy

Youth sport coaches should receive foundational learning experiences prior to entering coaching. Policies and legislation should address the education of athletes, coaches and parents.

National Youth Sports Health & Safety Institute

Kids Sports Injuries: The Numbers are Impressive

Sports injuries are the second leading cause of emergency room visits for children and adolescents, and the second leading cause of injuries in school.

Nationwide Children’s Hospital

Sports Injury Statistics

In the U.S., about 30 million children and teens participate in some form of organized sports, and more than 3.5 million injuries each year are experienced by the participants.

Stanford Medicine | Children’s Health

The National Youth Sports Strategy

All adults interacting with youth athletes must have the basic knowledge and skills to protect youth (from both injury and abuse) and to promote healthy behavior.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

PCSFN Science Board Report on Youth Sports

Optimizing the youth sports experience and promoting lifelong retention requires minimizing risks including abuse, burnout, injury, overuse and stress. Program evaluations can include youth sports-related injury data.

President’s Council on Sports, Fitness and Nutrition

Common Sports Injuries: Incidence

An estimated 12 million individuals between the ages of 5 and 22 years suffer a sport-related injury annually, which leads to 20 million lost days of school and approximately $33 billion in health care costs.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Youth Sport Coaches' Perceptions

When integrating injury-prevention programs, coaches are the primary decision makers.

NATA Journal of Athletic Training

Public Health Consequences of Sport Specialization

The primary reason for dropping out of sport most often cited by children themselves is that it is no longer fun. Dropout and burnout at an early age have been partially attributed to sport specialization and intensive training.

NATA Journal of Athletic Training

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