Safety First In Baseball Explained

By: Jimmy Cox

The safety factor is an important one at all levels of baseball, but it is particularly necessary with beginners. It should not be overlooked at any stage of Little League activity, whether in spring training, tryouts, practice sessions, or games. Coaches and managers might like to post the following list of precautions in a dugout, clubhouse, or dressing room:

1. Have an adult at the field at least a half hour in advance of the scheduled activity to control the group until the start of organized activity.

2. Check the field for obstacles - holes in outfield, stones, a hole in front of pitching rubber, etc.

3. Have the adult space the youngsters who are warming up so that other groups are not endangered by wild throws and muffed catches. The throwing should be parallel.

4. Unless the area is unusually large, have the adult keep the boys from participating in batting practice until the regular workouts begin. Pepper games can be organized if the players are spaced properly, with groups bat ting the ball parallel to each other. There should be no more than four players in each pepper game.

5. Have boys bring a jacket or sweater to wear during warm-up and after workout.

6. Require batters to wear batting helmets during batting practice. Helmets must be worn by batters and base-runners during games.

7. To keep bats from slipping out of batters' hands, use non-slip grips of tape on the handles, or have players use rosin on their hands.

8. Have rules about retrieving foul balls batted into busy streets.

9. The head-first slide should be prohibited except when returning to a base.

10. During sliding practice, bases should be left untied when boys are being taught the fundamentals of sliding.

11. Build a warning track at least six feet out from the fences and back stop, using cinders, gravel, or some similar material.

12. Inspect equipment regularly - particularly batting helmets and catching equipment.

13. Teach players to take good care of all equipment and facilities.

14. Players should not wear watches or rings.

Additional Safeguards

1. Medical examinations should be given to all players prior to the opening of the season.

2. If possible, a physician or nurse should be in attendance at each game.

3. All participants should be covered by accident insurance.

4. The team should possess a first-aid kit, which should be complete and available at every game. It should be in the charge of someone trained to use it.

5. Preseason first-aid instruction should be given all managers and coaches each year.

6. All protective equipment should be of good quality and should fit properly.

7. All dugouts should be screened.

8. All players not participating in the game must remain in the dugouts.

9. Players should be taught the proper techniques of sliding, hitting, fielding, etc.

10. Equipment should not be left on the ground where it can be stepped on and injury result.

First-Aid Kit
Contents of the first-aid kit should include:

2 Bandages 1" x 10 yd.
33 Band-Aid plastic strips
2 Bandages 2" x 10 yd.
1 Burn ointment
1 Bandage 3" x 10 yd.
3 Ammonia inhalants
1 Cotton 1/2 oz.
1 Scissors
1 Adhesive tape 1" x 2-1/2 yds.
1 Antiseptic
1 Gauze 1 yd.
1 First-Aid guide booklet
12 Sterile gauze pads 2" x 2"
6 Sterile eye pads
1 Triangular bandage

If all these precautions are taken, each game should be safe for all players.

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