A dramatic rise in the number of kids being injured playing organised sports has sparked warnings for parents to limit how much sport their kids participate in each week.

Experts fear kids are doing too much high-intensity sport at too young an age, causing stress and creating a spike in injuries.

Children under 10 years old suffered 63 per cent more sports-related injuries between 2008 and 2017, while those aged 10-14 were also hurt 60 per cent more.

The statistics included those playing rugby union, soccer, netball, basketball, rugby league, gymnastics and touch rugby.

ACC is trying to combat the huge spike in injuries by urging parents to restrict how much organised sport their kids play each week by following a guideline of one hour of sports for every year in age. Under this recommendation a 10-year-old would play no more than 10 hours of sport competition, training and PE a week.

ACC head of injury prevention Isaac Carlson said there was growing concern that too much sport may be as harmful for kids as not getting enough exercise.

“At least one hour a day of moderate to vigorous exercise is beneficial – either play or organised sport.”

Kids were either putting themselves at risk of injury by not doing enough exercise to be properly conditioned for the activity, or were playing in higher levels of sport and training but not having enough breaks, he said.

NZ Herald

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