Thursday, October 23, 2014

Sports Safety Tips from Heisman Trophy Winner, Desmond Howard + Enter the Aflac Ultimate College Football Sweepstakes #AflacSweeps #CleverGirls #ad @AflacDuck

"Aflac, the leading provider of voluntary insurance in the United States and an official partner of the Heisman Trophy, is kicking off the college football season with a new television commercial, an online sweepstakes and a partnership with 1991 Heisman Trophy winner Desmond Howard."

There are so many things friends and family never tell you about having children.  You only experience and learn how to handle these things when you are presented with them.  From frequent colds (especially if in a daycare setting) to trouble getting kids to sleep and stay asleep at night, to injuries sustained when playing around with friends or when engaged in sports, you can never fully be prepared for things -- but, there are ways to ease your mind with these helpful sports safety tips from 1991 Heisman Trophy winner Desmond Howard, who is partnering with Aflac this college football season. Here are some great tips for parents with kids who play football, or sports in general (as these tips go hand and hand with most sports our kids play)

"Baseball is often referred to as “America’s favorite past time,” but many believe that football is America’s game. The Super Bowl is the biggest sports event of the year, and college football constantly dominates headlines in the fall. However, since football is such a demanding and physical sport, injuries can be common and sometimes serious enough to lead to a trip to the emergency room.

However, it doesn’t have to be that way! To help your children learn how to keep things as safe as possible on the football field, follow these tips:

1) Football = lots of gear!
Some equipment may look “optional,” but it is important to wear all necessary pads and safety gear each time you play. If you show up for a practice or game without it, alert your coach immediately.

2) Follow the rules
While physical prowess is central to football, you must obey the rules. In the heat of the moment it’s easy to forget, but there is a reason why things like tripping, clipping, blocking below the knees and helmet-to-helmet contact are illegal in football: they can be very dangerous to both you and your opponents.

3) Listen to your body
If at any point you feel pain or discomfort while playing, notify your coach and get out of the game. While sitting on the sidelines is one of the most difficult situations a player can face, pushing through injuries increases the severity and keeps you out of action longer.

4) Take the doctor’s orders
After experiencing a sports injury, the first question a player often asks is, "When can I play again?" The answer depends on the injury. Always listen to your doctor. Even if you can't return right away, a doctor or physical therapist might have suggestions and advice on what you can do to stay fit and rehab the injury. It is important to always check with a doctor before attempting any activity following an injury.

5) Make sure you’re covered
Accidents happen. When unexpected injuries happen on the football field, make sure you’re prepared with supplemental insurance to help cover out-of-pocket expenses. According to the 2014 Aflac WorkForces Report, 66 percent of U.S. workers could not afford the costs associated with a serious illness or injury. That’s why voluntary insurance plans are so important. In the event of a serious injury, they help provide peace of mind and cash benefits to help you get back in the game fast."

In addition to the above useful sports safety tips from Desmond Howard and Aflac, parents can also feel more at ease when it comes to injuries and their children, if they carry supplemental insurance, like that offered through Aflac.

When unexpected illness or injuries DO happen, make sure you’re prepared with supplemental insurance.

According to the 2014 Aflac WorkForces Report, 66 percent of workers could not afford the costs associated with a serious illness or injury. 

Want to hear something else startling?  

"Without health insurance, the average cost to treat a broken leg, for example, is over $10,0001 - now just imagine a serious back injury!"

That’s where Aflac comes in ... if someone with an Aflac supplemental insurance plan experiences a serious illness or injury, Aflac helps ease the financial stress and provides cash benefits to help pay for out-of-pocket expenses. 

Supplemental insurance could help cover these and other expenses that may not be fully covered by your major medical insurance:

o Broken teeth

o Concussions

o Ambulance, ground and air

o Emergency room visits

o Lacerations

For nearly six decades, Aflac insurance policies have given policyholders the opportunity to focus on recovery, not financial stress. To learn more about Aflac and their supplemental insurance plans visit

Even though my girls are little, they have already had their fair share of ER and doctors visits due to injuries on the field and off. Last year alone, we found ourselves in the ER with our oldest twice as she was playing soccer in the backyard with Bella and their friends, and had a rock or other sharp object hit her in the head.  This had us up at the ER to get her forehead glued shut.  

Savannah sporting a band-aid to cover the gash on her forehead, 
which we needed to have glued shut, at the ER.

Then, a few months later, Bella took a tumble off the balance beam during gymnastics practice and blacked out, We were up all night monitoring her for a concussion.  And, then right before the holidays, Bella was at gymnastics and dislocated her elbow while on the uneven bars.  We had to rush her to the ER to have her elbow popped back into place, and then were icing and heating it the next few days, until she was back to her old self.

You can never predict if and when your child will get injured while playing with friends or engaged in recreational sports, nor can you keep them from wanting to join because of fears they may hurt themselves.  But, with the above sports safety tips, and precautions you take with your kids, you can be better prepared if an injury does occur.

Seeing my kids sick and hurt is one of the most difficult parts of being a part, as I don't like to see them in pain.  But, I also don't want to miss seeing them smile when they score a goal in a soccer game, land a dismount at gymnastics, or simply dance like no one is watching in dance class.

So, don't get caught off guard with sports injuries and your children, especially now that football is in full swing.  Hopefully with the helpful sports safety tips I shared above from the 1991 Heisman Trophy winner Desmond Howard and being well-informed about the supplemental insurance plans available from Aflac, you will be better prepared to handle your child's sports injuries, if and when they occur.


I don't know about you, but I love watching the Aflac Duck commercials.  And, now there is a new television commercial, which first started airing back on August 28th, that has the Aflac Duck sharing  his so-called football knowledge (or lack there of).  

Here is the cute commercial, if you haven't seen it yet...
"While the Aflac Duck might not be a football genius, he’ll hustle to help Aflac pay your claim – on average in just four days."

Are you the ultimate college football fan? If so, this #AflacSweeps is for you! Three lucky fans will win a trip for two, a pair of tickets to one of three college football games in November, a chance to meet Desmond Howard and more. Enter once per 24 hours on Facebook; for bonus entries, share on Twitter. 

-- Enter the Ultimate College Football Experience Sweepstakes -- 

Three prize packages will be awarded; winners will be announced Oct. 28, Nov. 4 and Nov. 11.

Each prize package includes:

• Two tickets to the biggest college football game of the weekend.

• Meet & greet with Desmond Howard.

• Round trip airfare.

• Hotel accommodations.

• Ground transportation to and from events.

• $500 prepaid debit card for food and other expenses.

Enter today by visiting  Then, spread the word to let your friends know it’s #GameOn!  

Want to stay up-to-date on all things Aflac, including sweepstakes and new Aflac Duck commercials like the ones above?  Then, make sure you are following Aflac's social media pages...

*CONSUMER NOTICE: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. PURCHASE WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED OR RESTRICTED BY LAW. Open to legal permanent residents of 50 U.S. states and DC, 21 or older, who have Internet access and valid email address prior to 08/28/14. To enter and for Official Rules, including odds and prize descriptions, click here: This sweepstakes is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook or Twitter. For a winner's list (after 11/10/14), visit the Ultimate College Football Experience tab of this page or mail request to Aflac "Ultimate College Football Experience" (Specify Winner List), Media Relations, 1932 Wynnton Road, Columbus, GA 31999. Sponsor: American Family Life Assurance Company of Columbus.

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

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