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The Value of Rest in Youth Sports

Although many young people seem to believe they are invincible, we adults know this couldn't be further from the truth. Recently, after suffering a fractured elbow, my own son learned the important value of rest and recovery; after 3 months of rest, he's returned to his sport a stronger, faster, and overall better player.

Indeed, in order to deliver an optimal performance, young people should be resting regularly and sufficiently. Time off from your sport, and sleep, are necessary to recover from both physical and mental stressors. The following is a closer look at the benefits of rest with regards to youth in sports.

Growth

One of the top reasons to make sure your child athlete gets rest is because rest promotes growth. This is due to the fact that growth hormone is primarily excreted during deep sleep. Over-exhaustion can also cause abnormal sleep patterns, so even though your child may be crawling into bed every night barely able to keep their eyes open, you will definitely want to make sure they're getting enough regular sleep.

Prevent Weight Gain

Studies have also shown that inadequate sleep can negatively affect weight. Without sufficient sleep, the hormone that tells us to stop eating, leptin, can be negatively affected and thus can cause excessive weight gain.

Vascular Health

Another of the top reasons to make sure your child is getting sufficient sleep is because it promotes good vascular health. Studies have shown that children who do not get enough sleep tend to maintain elevated glucose and cortisol levels throughout the night, which can cause obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.

Reduce Risk of Injury

Athletic children need enough sleep because it reduces the risk of injury. This is due to the fact that kids are typically clumsier when they have not had enough rest. In particular, one study asserts that 91% of the kids who had two or more injuries during a 12-month period also survived on fewer than 9 hours of sleep nightly.

Overall, children of all ages should be getting sufficient sleep. In particular, children ages 6-12 should be getting need 9-12 hours while kids ages 13-18 need 8-10 hours. Athletic children may occasionally need naps and/or an extra hour or two of sleep at night. Either way, be mindful of your child's sleeping habits and make sure they get enough rest every night.

About SwingFitt Sports

For all your performance fitness needs, contact SwingFitt Sports, the Tampa Bay area Partner of SwingFitt Global. Fitness training for baseball, softball, golf, football, tennis, lacrosse, and more, SwingFitt Sports specializes in functional movement and sport-specific performance enhancing fitness. For information on classes and trainings, contact 813-551-2255 or info@swingfittsports.com. Media inquiries or to become a SwingFitt Partner (franchise), contact info@swingfittglobal.com.

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