A NEW study has found 65 per cent of parents in the UK actively encourage their children to play sports – when it is allowed with the ongoing restrictions – with football, rugby and gymnastics the top sports outside of school.
However, 19 per cent of parents do not allow their children to take part in sport outside of school, for fear of injury or because of the additional costs involved with having to buy kit and paying fees.
One quarter of parents with sports-playing children say their child has been injured while playing sport, with rugby the most common cause.
The pain relief therapy experts at www.biofreeze.co.uk undertook the research as part of an ongoing study into the sporting habits of people in the UK.
Additionally, the survey investigated the reasons behind some parents not allowing their children to play sports outside of school. Almost 2,300 parents were surveyed, all of whom have children between the ages of five and 15.
It was initially found the majority of parents (58 per cent) have children who partake in some form of sports outside of school, with football (28 per cent), rugby (20 per cent) and gymnastics (18 per cent) the most popular.
A healthy 65 per cent of parents say they actively encourage their children to play sports as part of a healthy lifestyle.
However, it was also found that as many as one in five parents (19 per cent) do not allow their children to partake in sports outside of school at all.
Asked to specify their reasoning behind the decision, 31 per cent said it is because they fear their children would be at risk of being injured.
A further 23 per cent admitted the cost of buying sports kit and paying monthly sporting fees deterred them from enrolling their children into sporting teams, while 14 per cent fear their child would become too competitive playing sport and 11 per cent simply do not have the time.
Additionally, when relevant respondents were asked if their child had ever been injured while playing sports, more than a quarter (26 per cent) answered yes. The injuries stated included sprains (18 per cent), muscle soreness (19 per cent), dislocations (15 per cent) and broken bones (10 per cent).
The most common sports children received sporting injuries from were found to be rugby (30 per cent), horse riding (25 per cent), football (15 per cent), gymnastics (15 per cent) and trampolining (10 per cent). Netball (5 per cent) was found to be the sport the lowest number of children received injuries playing.
Bharat Gohil, spokesperson for www.biofreeze.co.uk, commented: “Sport is a fantastic way of getting kids out of the house and into the fresh air.
“Being part of a sporting team is a great way for them to develop social skills and be part of a team with their friends. There are always going to be concerns of them picking up an injury – that’s part and parcel of being a parent – but there are many things children can do to prevent injury.
“These include warming up properly and there are many products on the market, such as Biofreeze, that can help to ease the symptoms and pain associated with minor injuries, such as sprains and strains. As a non-medicated solution, this is ideal for children.”