Five Tips on Sports Safety for 2020-21 Athletes From North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center

As local school districts and athletic associations move forward with the fall sports season in the wake of COVID-19, the team of specialized sports medicine doctors at North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center are offering guidance to help protect the health and safety of student-athletes. Athletes or parents and guardians seeking specialized bone, joint and muscle care are encouraged to call (817) 481-2121 to schedule a safe appointment in Grapevine at 2535 Ira E. Woods Ave. or in Fort Worth at the practice’s Keller/Alliance office at 4501 Heritage Trace Parkway. The Orthopedic Urgent Care walk-in clinic at the practice’s Grapevine office as well as telemedicine appointments are also available.

“We are committed to the health and safety of student-athletes in the game and out in the world,” says Dr. Kerry Donegan, board-certified orthopedic surgeon and fellowship-trained sports medicine specialist at North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center. “To help athletes stay safe throughout the 2020-21 year, my team and I have developed a comprehensive list of guidelines to keep in mind as athletics resume.”

Student-athletes, parents, guardians and coaches should exercise caution to reduce the risk of viral spread in groups. To reduce this risk as well as the risk of injury, athletes and responsible parties should ensure these protocols and strategies are followed:

  • Take COVID-19 precautions: Respect guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and maintain social distancing as best as possible. Players, parents and coaches should also follow any state, local, school, league and venue regulations set to combat the spread of COVID-19.
  • Take health and hygiene precautions: Keep a balanced, nutrient-rich diet, always stay properly hydrated and avoid overtraining. You should also practice good hygiene, especially when in public spaces or before entering shared spaces. Wash your hands, avoid touching your face, wear face masks/coverings when appropriate and avoid being in close contact with those outside of your household when you are able.
  • Take medical precautions: Athletes should get a physical from a medical professional as soon as possible if they have not already for the 2020-21 year. This includes those who are training individually. A thorough exam will ensure the safety of their conditioning and intensity of their workouts.
  • Take precautions in training, workouts and practices: As COVID-19 best practices and guidelines have restricted the activity levels of many, athletes should cautiously increase their training and conditioning and pay attention to their limits and pains in competition and practices to avoid injury, immunosuppression or illness. Athletes may need to slowly rebuild cardiovascular and muscular strength.
  • Take precautions in the heat: The risk of heat-related illness is still high in the remaining hot days of the season, especially for those who have remained indoors more frequently than usual while taking COVID-19 precautions. Athletes may need to slowly acclimate themselves to sun and heat and should stretch before and after activities, stay hydrated and keep primarily to shaded areas.

“We understand that many athletes are excited to move forward with their sport and return to competitions, and we also know that this comes with a number of risks, including injury,” says fellowship-trained sports medicine surgeon Dr. Casey Stuhlman. “Our Sports Medicine Team at North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center is here for local athletes, and we provide the high-quality, specialized care and rehabilitative plans needed for sports-related injuries to ensure a safe return to play.” 

North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center offers safe appointments in their offices. Their providers also offer telemedicine visits in addition to walk-in clinic hours to provide consultation for bone, joint and muscle problems. North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center’s Orthopedic Urgent Care offers immediate, specialized care for sprains, fractures, dislocations and other acute or sports-related injuries.

To learn more or to schedule an appointment with the sports medicine experts at North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center, please call (817) 481-2121.

As the most preferred orthopedic practice in the region, North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center is dedicated to offering compassionate, experienced care for bone, joint and muscle injuries and conditions, helping patients live healthy and active lives. The specialty-trained doctors at North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center are leaders in orthopedics, offering specialized care for the ankle, back, elbow, foot, hand, hip, knee, neck, shoulder, spine and wrist as well as in general orthopedics, joint replacement, orthopedic trauma, pain management and sports medicine. The experts at North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center also provide sports medicine coverage for many collegiate and area high school athletes. To learn more about North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center and its doctors, please visit, “Like” North Texas Orthopedics & Spine Center on Facebook or follow @NTxOrthoSpine on Twitter.