Most parents and coaches are aware of the potential for injury in youth sports but injuries caused by improper use of equipment is a sad reality in soccer. Since 1979, portable soccer goals have killed 36 people, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, but even more people have been injured. Many times the injuries don’t occur during games but before/after games, when adults aren’t supervising children playing around the goals.
Just a few weeks ago, a nine-year-old boy in North Carolina was killed when an unsecured goal fell on his head as he played soccer with his cousins after church. The field was at a mobile home park and no youth soccer organizations were involved, but this tragedy serves as a reminder for all coaches, volunteers, and youth soccer organizations to remind your members of proper placement and securing of portable and stationary soccer goals.
Goal Safety Tips
- NEVER allow anyone to play on or hang on the net or framework of a goal
- Use extreme caution when moving goals. Portable soccer goals should only be moved by adults (not children) who are authorized to do so. Allow for adequate manpower to move the goals.
- Inspect goals prior to EVERY use to make sure they are anchored properly and for structural integrity
- Communicate with all of your players and families and instruct them on the dangers associated with goals