Injury prevention programmes prevent severe football injuries in kids

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While we are aware of the effectiveness of injury prevention programmes for adults, limited research has focused on injury prevention in our children under the age of 14 years. Injuries in football players aged 7-12 years are common and can be significant (about a quarter of these injuries cause an absence of more than 28 days from sport). These risk of sustaining this type of injury can be reduced by more than 50% by warming up differently.1.

The 11+ Kids programme is a 15-minute warm-up designed to prevent injuries in children’s football. It consists of seven different exercises each with five levels of difficulty. Dynamic stability, power, core strength and falling techniques are the focus of the warm-up. These exercises were designed to be fun and age-appropriate. In this large multicentre cluster-randomised controlled trial, football teams in the intervention group did the 11+ Kids warm-up twice a week, while the control group of teams followed their regular training regime. The incidence of severe injuries (time off football of at least 28 days from injury) was then assessed in both groups. Fractures were the most common type of injury in both groups while the majority of injuries involved the lower limbs.

The 11+ Kids programme reduced fractures by 49%. The programme also had an impact on the injuries featured on different playing surfaces, with a reduction in overall severe injuries on artificial turf by 64%, by 53% indoor and 65% on grass. Severe non-contact injuries were reduced by 53% in the groups using the 11+ Kids, severe contact injuries by about 45%. It is suggested that improved agility and stability, as well as more skill with falling techniques, can be preventative factors developed when doing 11+ Kids. The risk of overuse injuries could be related to improving neuromuscular performance and stability of the lower limbs/trunk. Using the 11+ Kids programme reduced overall severe injuries in these children by 58%.

These results demonstrate that with just 15-20 minutes twice a week of completing an injury prevention programme such as 11+ Kids, significant gains can be made in preventing severe injuries in children’s football. This is high motivation for coaches and trainers to include these in their teams routine, and to encourage nationwide implementation in clubs from a youth level.

To learn more about injury prevention and paediatric injuries complete the injury prevention and kids modules in the FIFA Diploma in Football Medicine.

Beaudouin F, Rössler R, aus der Fünten K, et al. Effects of the ‘11+ Kids’ injury prevention programme on severe injuries in children’s football: a secondary analysis of data from a multicenter cluster-randomised controlled trial. Br J Sports Med  Published Online First: 02 October 2018. doi: 10.1136/bjsports-2018-099062

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Mohamed Afify
Mohamed Afify
15 November 2018 16:42

Great information from great expert

Adamu Mohammed MAGAJI
16 November 2018 10:01

If we catch them young and train them right, it will surely go a long way in protecting them against injury in the future!

Wagou Nintcheu Irene
19 November 2018 20:05

Thank you for this information. the fact is that more and more cameroonian children are interested in playing football and it should very important to discuss this warm up program with their coaches . I think it could be a good thing to implement 11+ Kids all over the world.

20 November 2018 2:21

Great study to highlight!

Mark Fulcher
21 November 2018 6:42

Thanks for the feedback Mohamed. Are there any other topics you would like us to look at?

Mark Fulcher
21 November 2018 6:43

Totally agree Adamu. If we can help kids prepare better, get stronger and move better hopefully they will get injuries less, enjoy football more and play longer!

Gabriel Tabona
23 November 2018 7:22

A very insightful article.Proper football infrastructure is a key safeguard against injuries in children especially in Kenya

24 November 2018 7:03

This is great news. The 11+ warm up has been shown to be effective in other groups as well in previous studies. Thanks to Dr Soligard and colleagues!

25 November 2018 23:43

Le programme11 de la fifa est base sur la PRÉVENTION tant chez les adultes que chez les enfants.Dans la pratique du sport les blessures sont fréquentes pouvant à la longue handicapées certains.
Donc avec un bon programme nous pouvons éviter ces blessures par le conseil d un staff bien forme comprenant des.
Exiger aux enfants des échauffement étirements et stretching avant et après l effort

26 November 2018 0:17

ACL GRAFT RUPTURE Nous ne cesserons jamais de répéter qu’ un trauma du GENOU doit être pris au serieux quelque soit son degré d atteinte. Un genou en valgus ouvarnum force entraîne toujours des lésions des ligaments latéraux des ménisque internes et externes des ligaments croisés antérieurs et postérieurs. La lésion par impact est une conclusion commune de l IRM après une lésion du LAC. Il est à rappeler que lors d une atteinte du LAC il faut penser probablement à une atteinte du ligament ANTERO LATÉRAL c est tout comme le LLI et le ménisque interne. Lorsque la chirurgie… Read more »

26 November 2018 14:27

La tendinopathies de la rotule est une lésion fréquenté dans le sport en général et le foot ball en particulier. Après une consultation il serait important de faire des imagerie telles
Le traitement est en général médical avec
Mais en cas de rupture ou présence d un osselet la chirurgie s impose.
Le retour doit être progressif

26 November 2018 23:00

POSTERIOR CRUCIATE LIGAMENT RUPTURE La litterature nous apprend que le LIGAMENT croisé antérieur est plus résistant que le LIGAMENT croisé postérieur. Après un examen minutieux du genou avec les tests de maternité et de terroir avec une imagerie adequate(Radio NUMÉRISÉE IRM SCINTIGRAPHIE Echographie) pour mettre en évidence une éventuelle rupture d un ligament qu’ il soit partiel ou total il faut envisager un traitement médical en première intention et CHIRURGICAL en cas d échec. La prise en charge d un joueur de l académie doit être prompte et sérieuse car un enfant est un fleuron il n est pas un… Read more »

Adamu Mohammed MAGAJI
16 November 2018 10:01

If we catch them young and train them right, it will surely go a long way in protecting them against injury in the future!

Mohamed Afify
Mohamed Afify
15 November 2018 16:42

Great information from great expert