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Growth spurts explained
Your kids can grow at alarming rates

Growth spurts can be a big issue for some children.

They have a disorientating affect on their sporting activities and make them more susceptible to injury.

When do they strike?

Girls tend to have growth spurts between the ages of seven and 12, while boys typically experience growth spurts later - usually from 10 to 14.

But every child is unique and develops at a different rate.

What's happening?

During a growth spurt a child's bones grow first and fast and their muscles and tendons become inflexible as they get stretched tight until they catch up.

The child's longer limbs, bigger feet and lack of muscular structure can often lead to a loss in co-ordination.

And there's a greater tendency to be injury-prone.

Useful precautions

  • Make sure your child stretches before and AFTER sport (it's a better stretch and improves flexibility quickly)

  • Ease your child into new seasons or sports
  • Keep ability levels as closely matched as possible
  • Avoid explosive sports!

    Where injuries hit

    In particular watch out for nagging heel or knee injuries and inflammations.

    Late developers

    Some kids may be at a disadvantage physically if they are late maturers.

    But keep up the words of encouragement.

    Late developers can still go on to have excellent sporting experiences.

  • It's totally unnecessary to buy expensive boots or kit. They'll need another pair in six months when their bodies have grown.
    A Shields, cricket coach and father


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