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Risks and hazards

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Risks and hazards

In this task I am going to explain the risks and hazards associated with sports performance and analyse why sports performers are at risk when taking part in sport. I will also analyse how specialist equipment may be used to reduce injury.

The first hazard I will explain is spatial awareness and safety for yourself and others. Safety is very important and should be looked at thoroughly before any activity is performed as the participant could injure himself or herself, which may put them out of the activity for weeks or years. It is extremely important to consider both the participants and spectators safety. For example in a contact sport there are rules that keep similar age groups together and that separate the sex’s at certain ages. This is an attempt to make the competition even and safe by keeping the experience and strength of the players at a similar level. This will also help prevent injury.

The next hazard I will explain is the warm up. The warm up is very important and should always be performed before playing any sport. Muscles that aren’t correctly prepared tend to injure easier. The warm up should start with some light cardiovascular activities such as:

  • Jumping jacks
  • Easy jogging
  • Brisk walking

This increases your heart rate allowing more blood to go to you muscles therefore supplying them with more oxygen so that they can work properly. Stretches should also be performed after the cardiovascular activities to minimise injury later.

The third hazard I will explain is clothing. Suitable clothing should be worn for the sport you are playing, for example for football you would wear shorts, t-shirt, football boots and long socks as this is suitable clothing for the sport you are playing. Not only does wearing the correct kit look professional but it also keeps you safe and helps reduce injury. Wearing the wrong kit and not wearing certain safety implements can result in either injury or you not being allowed to participate in the sport. Jewellery and piercings should also be removed as they could get caught on something and tear the skin surrounding it.

The fourth hazard I will explain is the weather conditions. Weather conditions should always be taken into consideration when deciding what activities are going to take place. For example in athletics are running or hurdling events cancelled if the ground is wet or frosty?  Weather conditions should always be taken into account as the weather could make some activities dangerous, which could result in injury. The weather should be carefully considered before each activity and if the teacher does decide to go ahead with the planned activity he/she should check the correct equipment is used, for example:

  • If running takes place on a very hot day water should be provided to prevent dehydration.
  • If football is played on very wet ground football boots should be worn.

The next hazard I will explain is supervision. A suitable adult should always supervise participants. The supervising adult or teacher should be able to keep the class under control at all times. Failure to do so could result in injury. The participants should always follow the instructions made by the supervising adult and should follow the rules of play to help minimise injury. Participants should always act sensibly; unacceptable behaviour by participants could put themselves or others in danger. Therefore careful supervision of the activity is needed and any participants behaving irresponsibly could be removed from play.

The last hazard I will explain is the warm down. It is just as important for the participants to perform a cool down as it is for them to perform a warm up. During a hard sport session muscle fibres, ligaments and tendons are damaged the cool down will help to assist your body in repairing them and get rid of the ‘post exercise muscle soreness’ . It also helps to keep blood circulating, which in turn prevents ‘blood pooling’. The blood also brings nutrients and oxygen to help with the repair of the muscles. An effective cool down should consist of:

  • Gentle exercise
  • Stretching
  • Re-fuel. Both food and drink are important.

Specialist equipment is also needed in some sports to prevent injury. For example:

  • High Jump and Pole Vault – round bars and soft mats at least 4m x 2.5m to prevent injury.
  • Gymnastics – chalk to help the participant grip onto things such as bars and rings.
  • Track events – finishing tapes made of easily breakable material such as worsted positioned at chest height so winning participant doesn’t cause himself/herself an injury.

Specialist equipment is used to prevent injury and to keep participants safe. If the correct equipment isn’t used the coach or supervisor may take the participant out of the sport or game at the participants risk. if football is played on wet ground football boots should be worn or

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Safety Aspects and Risk Assessment section.

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