Today as I was driving I passed at least three parks all with baseball, soccer and other sporting events taking place. Summer is approaching and teams are hitting the fields more frequently. I doesn’t matter what sport you are involved in, all athletes should be prepared for injuries to occur. As an athlete or coach, you should always have a first aid kit on site. Murphy’s Law will never fail in that the one time you don’t have one, is the occasion that you need it. It’s important to care for the wound or injury properly to avoid being sidelined for the rest of the season.
Every sport has certain injuries that are more common. Sports that involve running with fast starts and stops, such as baseball and soccer are more prone to sprains and strains. With sports like climbing and skateboarding, abrasions are the order of the day. To determine what should be in your first aid kit, take a look at your sport and determine the type of injuries that you see most often. Here is a list for some common essentials that should be included in your kit.
- Bandages: Every first aid kit should be fully stocked with an assortment of bandages. Band aids are essential as it is often common for athletes of any age to get scraped up during a game. Make sure to have a wide variety of small and large bandages to effectively cover and protect different sized wounds
- Gloves: To protect yourself and the athlete you are tending to, always have latex gloves in your first aid kit. Any time there is an open wound where blood and bodily fluids are present, you should be wearing gloves to allow for the area to remain clean and also to protect yourself and the person who is being treated from infection.
- Antiseptic Spray: When tending to a cut or open wound, you always want to have antiseptic spray or cleaner in your first aid kit for easy access. Ensuring the wound stays clean and bacteria-free is critical for a fast and safe recovery.
- Splints and Slings: It is very common in most contact sports such as football, hockey and rugby for athletes to break or dislocate bones. Therefore it is essential that you carry splints and slings in your first aid kit. This will allow the athlete to reduce movement to the area and ensure no further damage is caused until they arrive at the hospital.
- Gauze Pads: These pads are sterile dressings that do not stick to the body. Gauze pads are convenient for covering large wounds with the assistance of medical tape, and are also good for cleaning the wound before applying a band aid or tending to a bloody nose.
- Ice Packs: Always carry an instant freeze ice pack in your first aid kit. Athletes often experience bumps and bruises or head injuries. An ice pack will help reduce the swelling and decrease the pain the athlete may experience.
Not sure how to put together your own athlete’s first aid kit? We recommend Angel Safety Products here in Fort Langley as they have a wide variety of kits to meet any requirements. If you need something specific, they can put a custom kit together for you.