Children’s Foot Injuries in Fall Sports


Although the leaves are just beginning to change here in Connecticut, fall sports programs are in full swing across our state. Children love sports, whether it’s football or soccer or a pick-up game right around the corner.

But too often parents must rush to the emergency room for a sports-related injury. In fact, U.S. emergency rooms treat thousands of these injuries every day! Out of the estimated 38 million children and teens who participate in organized sports each year, more than 2.6 million must be treated in ERs for sports and recreation-related injuries (CDC).

Children’s Common Foot and Ankle Sports Injuries

Ankle sprains, where the joint’s ligaments are stretched and damaged or torn, are the most common sports-related injury.

Stress fractures and tendonitis are repetitive motion injuries and can result from overused tendons and muscles. 

Plantar fasciitis– inflammation of the plantar fascia tissue that connects the heel bone to the forefoot along the bottom of the foot – often strikes young athletes. Running or jumping on hard surfaces can result in heel pain caused by plantar fasciitis.

Young bodies that are still growing may experience growth plate injuries. Growth plates are present at the ends of many long bones such as those in the foot as well as the upper and lower leg, forearm, hands and fingers. A foot doctor must give specialized care to a growth plate injury in a young athlete’s foot.

Treating Sports-Related Injuries

R.I.C.E. treatment is helpful for minor injuries as well as for those occasions when you are waiting to see a podiatrist. R.I.C.E. treatment includes resting the foot or leg, applying ice to the area, using compression and elevating the leg. 

When the injury is more serious with severe pain or swelling, or an obvious fracture or dislocation, take the child quickly to an emergency room, doctor’s office or urgent care center. 

Preventing Sports-Related Injuries

  • Make sure that your child has the appropriate gear, especially sport-specific, well-fitting footwear.

  • Be involved! Participate in practices and games to ensure that your child is not overdoing it.

  • Ensure that the coach has the right knowledge and experience for the sport and also is trained in both CPR and first aid.

  • Check to see that your child warms up before activities and cools down afterwards. 

Most importantly, stay tuned to your child for any signs of pain. Foot and ankle pain are not normal! Don’t allow your child to work through pain or discomfort as this can exacerbate the injury. 

Let Us Help Relieve Your Heel Pain

The foot specialists at PodiatryCare, PC and the Heel Pain Center have extensive experience in treating all aspects of foot problems. Our team of doctors is dedicated to serving you with all of the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies. Many treatments and surgeries can be handled right in our offices. Please call us at (860) 741-3041 to make an appointment in one of our offices conveniently located in Enfield, Windsor and South Windsor, CT