CHICAGO, April 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Local communities throughout Chicagoland are joining forces with physicians to keep kids safe at skate parks this spring. The 'Skate Safe' initiative, sponsored by community park districts and Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush (MOR), aims to help reduce the number of skateboard injuries, which peak in spring and summer months.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, there was a 23 percent jump in reported skateboard injuries for kids younger than age 15 between 2013 and 2015. (figures for 2016 not out yet) Experts agree that injuries have increased with the skyrocketing popularity of skateboarding, which is often referred to as the "No. 1 Extreme Sport" in the US.
"While we are concerned about all injuries, especially concussions, we typically see a large number of finger, wrist, forearm and elbow fractures," says Dr. Robert Wysocki of the MOR Hand, Wrist & Elbow Institute. "And, it's a shame because many of these are preventable."
"While we want skateboarders to enjoy the park and have fun, we want to keep them safe from the dangers associated with the sport," explains Larry Piekarz, Park District of Forest Park Director.
Besides Forest Park, Illinois park districts adopting "Skate Safe" include: Hinsdale, Glen Ellyn, Westmont, Wheaton, Naperville and Oak Park. Munster, Indiana, is also on board. The park districts have posted injury prevention signs and are hosting semi-pro skateboarder demonstrations over the summer months (see a full list at www.skatesafer.org).
While taking precautions to avoid injury may not feel cool to all skateboarders yet, MOR physicians and staff have put together these simple steps that can go a long way toward staying out of the doctor's office:
- Wear a helmet, wrist guards, knee and elbow pads
- Pay attention to other skateboarders and watch for hazardous obstacles
- Avoid dangerous conditions like wet ground or places with loose objects on the ground
- Keep your skateboard, wheels and parts in good condition; inspect it before every ride
- Don't ride with others who are either much older or younger – or of a very different skill level
- If you have pain or are injured, seek attention from a physician
- Do not use headphones while skateboarding.
More tips and tricks on how to be safe while skateboarding are available at skatesafer.org.
To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/chicagoland-communities-work-to-flip-the-stats-on-skateboard-injuries-300254604.html
SOURCE Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush