[HEALTH & FITNESS] Former U.S. standout Cobi Jones and 2012 Olympic gold medalist Alex Morgan are among the stars involved in the Sports Injury Prevention Program initiative designed to educate players, parents and coaches on the importance of injury-prevention warmups.
The Sports Injury Prevention Program utilizes FIFA 11+, which focuses on running, strength, plyometrics – exercises that train muscles for fast and powerful movements – and balance. The program travels to 15 select cities this year to hold injury prevention clinics for local youth athletes,
Also promoting the program are Olympic gold medalists Heather Mitts and Heather O’Reilly, and Dr. Bert Mandelbaum, the team physician for all U.S. Soccer Federation teams. Mandelbaum has been a pioneer in the research of ACL injury trends among female athletes and headed the development team that created the Prevent Injury and Enhance Performance (PEP) program.
The 42-year-old Jones, who retired in 2004 after playing in three World Cups and the Olympics, says a proper warm-up is especially crucial because youth soccer has gotten more intense over the years.
“The intensity at such a young age for the kids has gone through the roof,” says Jones. “It’s beyond anything I grew up with. … It’s year-round doing one sport. They’re doing the same things over and over. If you can get a proper warm-up, doing this diversity of activities, it makes sure you’re ready to go for the training session or the game.”
Upcoming Sports Injury Prevention Clinics
Monday, Oct. 29 at 7:00pm in ET. (with Heather Mitts)
Eddie C. Moore Soccer Complex
Friday, Nov. 2 at 6:00 pm ET. (with Heather Mitts & Heather O’Reilly)
West Orange Soccer Complex
Winter Garden, Fla.
Tuesday, Nov. 6. (with Cobi Jones)
Miami, Fla. Venue TBA
For a video of Cobi Jones and Alex Morgan demonstrating FIFA 11+exercises, go here.
For more on the Sports Injury Prevention Program, go here.
For more on the FIFA 11+ Warm-up Program and downloadable Manual, go here.