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Basketball insurance for leagues, instructors, basketball camps and basketball tournaments is highly recommended to protect against liability claims.
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Basketball Risk Management
Basketball, like any incidental contact sport, provides ample opportunity for players to suffer significant injuries. Basketball injuries are rarely life threatening, but concussions, broken bones, and ligament tears can be serious. Broken noses, sprained ankles, jammed and broken fingers, bruises, abrasions from slides, and poked eyes are common injuries suffered on the court. Spectators can suffer slip-trip-fall injuries and get hurt by players colliding into bleachers or being hit by thrown balls.
Injuries are bound to occur, but taking preventive steps and being cautious minimizes the risks.
Common Basketball Injuries
- Ankle sprains
- Knee Internal Derangement
- Patella injuries
Basketball rules are as much about the game as they are about safety. Fouling other players often results in injuries, as will tripping, shoving, and holding other players. In addition, many injuries arise from going after loose balls and from tryingto take a charge. Referees must maintain control of the game to prevent overly physical play.
Ensuring players are hydrated during games and practice is imperative. Heat-related illness and dehydration can lead to other physical ailments.
Year-round play basketball leagues play can lead to excessive-play injuries such as strains and sprains, tendonitis, growth plate injuries and stress fractures.
A first aid and CPR-certified coach, parent, or referee should be on hand for all games and practices. In addition, most facilities are required to have an automated external defibrillator( AED) available in the event of a participant or spectator-related cardiac event.
- Basketball shoes are intended to minimize foot, ankle and leg injuries. High-top shoes offer added ankle support. Basketball shoes should have non-skid soles and be laced securely during all practices and games.
- Protective eyewear made of shatterproof plastic is highly recommended for players who wear eyeglasses and contacts.
- Mouth guards are not always required by leagues, but wearing one is recommended to help prevent or minimize injuries to teeth, lips and the tongue.
Coaches should maintain proper safety guidelines for players and make sure that players are taking the right precautions and wearing the appropriate gear. Coaches should monitor the following:
- Facilities: Courts and boundary areas should be regularly cleaned and inspected prior to practices and games.
- Equipment: Balls, gear and the backboards/rims should be inspected prior to practices and games.
- Player levels and abilities: Players should be matched up by age and physical ability.
- Pre and post-play: Coaches should offer players adequate time to stretch, warm up, and cool down before and after practices and games.
- Player conditioning: Practice activities should gradually increase player conditioning without overworking them.
It’s important that basketball leagues protect their directors and officers from costly lawsuits resulting from allegations of negligent supervision, discrimination, noncompliance with state/federal laws, allegations of sexual abuse and other claims against league management. Defending against such claims can bankrupt the league, but also impact the personal finances of individual board members. Officers and board members need to be protected by both General Liability and Directors & Officers Liability insurance.