Young athletes are not just small adults. They are still growing and developing their coordination. Because they are often training only for their specific sport, they may not know how to properly recognize injuries. Add to that their drive and determination—trying to meet coaches’ and parents’ expectations as well as their own—they often ignore a twinge or pain, assuming they’re just sore from their training. Often, parents, coaches, and administrators try to build experience in kids, and because of this extraordinary push to make professionals out of our young, growing athletes, kids are wearing their bodies out, causing injuries that will affect them for a lifetime and ending their careers prematurely.
Ensure they have the proper strength, endurance, balance, coordination, and mobility for their sport by working with specialists in strength and conditioning and even prehabilitation. Prevent injuries with regular check-ins, a proactive way to support your child in their athletic and physical growth, especially when transitioning to a new or higher-level sport, at the beginning and end of the season, and after a growth spurt or puberty, as well as after any injury, surgery, or extended illness.
The Children’s Hospital Youth Sports Medicine program offers comprehensive care for young athletes with sports-related injuries or other issues. Located on the Baton Rouge General campus right off Bluebonnet, the clinic is staffed by pediatricians and pediatric orthopedic specialists who are knowledgeable of the unique needs of children.
Dr. Tony Gonzales specializes in Pediatric Orthopedics at Children’s Hospital. Dr. Gonzales has more than 15 years of experience, is certified by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgeons and serves as the Department Head of Pediatric Orthopedics at Children’s Hospital. He says, “I enjoy helping young people get through difficult situations in their childhood and adolescence.” Dr. Gonzales sees patients in New Orleans, Covington and Baton Rouge.
Patients have access to the full array of orthopedic services offered through Children’s Hospital. In addition, outpatient services, emergency care, surgery, and other inpatient services and procedures are also offered as needed. Children’s Hospital also has a comprehensive Rehabilitation Unit, a Spinal Unit, physical and occupational therapies, and on-site X-ray, CAT scan, and MRI services if you should need them. Click here to take a virtual tour.