The Darien YMCA in partnership with Orthopaedic and Neurosurgery Specialists is hosting a series of lectures on topics surrounding youth sports safety. These lectures are designed to give parents, caregivers, and coaches the tools they need to help young athletes stay healthy and safe while participating in activities they enjoy. These free lectures will be held at the Darien Y every Tuesday in October at 7 p.m.

Each lecture will be one hour in length and discuss topics including the dangers of sport specialization, what makes a healthy athlete, diagnosing a concussion and understanding gender roles. An ONS specialist will lead each discussion and leave time for questions and answers.

On Oct. 3,  ONS Sports Medicine Specialist Dr. Marc Kowalsky will lead a discussion on “The dangers of sports specialization.” Dr. Kowalsky will discuss strategies to protect young athletes from burnout and season-ending injuries that may affect them well into adulthood.

Next, on Oct. 10,  ONS Sports Medicine Specialist Dr. Demetris Delos will explore “The Healthy Athlete.” Dr. Delos will outline the nutritional and sleep requirements for competitive student athletes of all ages and the dangerous growth in performance enhancing substance abuse among youth.

Then on Oct. 17, ONS Neurosurgeon Dr. Scott Simon will discuss the signs and treatments for the concussed athlete during “Is it a Concussion?” ONS Athletic Trainer Pete Falla will join the discussion and outline concussion assessment tests and ways for student athletes to avoid sitting out the rest of the game.

Lastly, on Oct. 24, Dr. Katherine Vadasdi, MD, Director of the ONS Women’s Sports Medicine Center will go in depth on “Women’s Sports Medicine: Understanding the role gender plays in sports injury.” Alicia Hirscht, PT, Director of ONS Physical Therapy/Stamford will be on hand to demonstrate injury prevention exercises.

There is no cost to attend a lecture but reservations are required. Please RSVP by emailing balfredo@onsmd.com or jvansciver@darien-ymca.org.