Soccer Game - Asked to Remove ID Bracelet

My son had his first soccer game this last weekend.  After the game he came off the field digging his Medical ID "Diabetic" bracelet out of his ball bag.  He said that the umpires told him he couldn't wear it during the game (they were aware of his condition).

Our team manager was present during this enlightenment and said she would e-mail the club to find out "what was up with that?"  We haven't heard their response.


His bracelet is the "rubber" "jelly-type" band with no closures or clasps.  It just stretches to fit over his hand and then "shrinks" back to fit his wrist.  I can barely fit a finger under it.

His team coaches have no issue with it; and haven't made any suggestion that he should ever take it off.

So, What to do?  What to do?

I have snooped around on some other web sites and others have said that they "tape" their metal bracelet down.  What does that "look" like?  Does anyone have a picture of how to do that?  What kind of tape?  What's the point if you can't read it because of the tape? 

I absolutely could just "do as they say" and have him take it off for games.  Here's my heartache though.  We just got chewed out by his dr. at his last appointment for not having ID on.  We purchased this new "comfortable" band, explained it's importance, and I can proudly say he has had it on 24/7 for 3 months --until that game day.

This T1D thing is only 9 months old with us.  Are there some of you "seasoned" experts out there who can give me some suggestions as to which battles to fight or a compromise is this situation?

I want to make sure my son gets the right message.

You know, i had a similar problem with this when i was younger and played soccer. Same situation. Had an ID bracelet on, was told to take it off or I couldnt play. Now the thing is that i started to think about is, is my coaches know, the parents of other kids and kids know, and you are there, then there shouldnt be a reason to wear it. You know the situation and it can be explained to the paramedics if something were to happen (hope it doesnt). Granted if you feel more comfortable with him wearing the bracelet i would go to the website of the soccer organization that your son plays for and call/email them directly. Most people are understanding, and if the bracelet is "gummy" as you say it is then it shouldnt be a hazard, if it does have metal on it, i would suggest just using some scotch tape over the two ends of the ID part which leaves it visible.

Like i said, if you or anyone else is there that knows about your sons condition then you should be fine. I personally got together with all of the family members and coaches after one of my games and told them what to do if i were to have a problem on the field.


Hope this helps :)

Well, there are a couple things to consider, and based on that take action (or not.)

First: Mostly out of curiosity, why do the refs want him to remove it? Is it a safety consideration, as in a concern that another kid could purposefully or even accidentally grab it, and potentially hurt your kid? Is there a rule about "jewelry" of any kind? And if so, is it also due to safety or is it a uniformity rule?

If it's for safety you could ask for an exception, pointing out the significance and the tightness. If it's necessary to convince them, you could offer the use of sports tape. This would, obviously call in to question the effectiveness, which brings me to the other consideration.

Second: If only during the game (and/or practice) is it really necessary to have the medical ID if (as I assume) there are responsible and informed adults present? If something were to happen where he would be unconscious or unable to clearly communicate, that's when the medical ID is important. But in the situation here, there would be a responsible adult present to do that communication. 

Personally, I'd probably fight this battle, but only to a point. Compromise only when health and safety are not part of the compromise - and in this situation that may be true. The message to you son should remain that his health and safety is always number one. He should have a medical ID whenever possible, and this may not be one of those times. 

Yep.  I am at all practices and games.  So, yes someone who "knows" is always in attendance.

Note One:  I am NOT a "overbearing" parent who complains about every rule or call or even play time.  Quite frankly, I hate confrontation so. . . .

I absolutely would not jeopardize his safety by having him remove it for games.  There are probably 10 people at every practice and game that know of his condition.  However, (he's 10 now) let's say he gets in the habit of taking it off for games like this and one day, several years from now, he finishes a game, heads to the locker room, changes his clothes, and gets into his car to drive home.  Oops, did I mention he forgot to put his bracelet BACK on!  --- Yep, I dream in vivid color too.

I think both of you have hit it on the head.  Tape it up.

I am very visual though and still don't know what that means.  Am I taping it to his arm?  Will he hate me when we "rip" it off?

I guess I do need to check with the club to find out what the issue really is.  Then I can see if that taping thing will work.

i'm a soccer referee.  As far as jewelry goes, we were taught that basically no jewelry should be allowed, BUT it is always the ref's choice what to allow.  Most refs allow jewelry that is either religious or medical (especially since your son's bracelet is rubber, it should be no problem) and some even allow earrings.  My advice on this would be to tell/ask the ref (be sure to say it's a medical bracelet) or send the coach to ask the ref before the game.  Although there are some idiot refs out there, most of them are nice and will understand--at least the ones that i know.  I've also played soccer for twelve years and have only had problems wearing my ID bracelet on the field a handful of times.  If you still have a problem w/ the ref not allowing your son to wear his ID bracelet, I would recommend contacting a field official politely either before or after the game; oftentimes they'll be somewhere at the soccer complex.  good luck w/ this!

That's completely ridiculous. I understand the rule to not have jewellery, glasses etc. But when it comes to a medical condition, you cannot deny someone of wearing emergency notification. If he wants to wear it, if you want him to wear it, he has every right to wear it, and excluding him because of it would be discrimination. Having the rubber bracelet is the most they can ask for, and if you wanted him to wear another type, then he can! If something happened, where an ambulance was unable to identify his illness, the ref, and governing bodies would be held 100% liable. Anything can happen, so you can never assume that your presence will be enough to help in an emergency situation. What if he has low sugars, and becomes disoriented, wonders off calmly without notice. I don't need to go through all the possibilities now, but I strongly recommend standing by your choice, they have absolutely no right to make decisions about you or your child’s healthcare management.

Man, people like that make me angry!

i don't think it's overbearing at all to complain about it and request that an acception be made for his bracelet(especially if it's rubber!). it's a medical concern if something happens, and he needs to have it on at all times, whether or not you or someone who knows about his condition are around.

i personally NEVER take mine off, and i have a silver bracelet(though it used to be a metal one). i've taken my bracelet off twice(besides to switch bracelets) i think in my 15years of being diabetic and it was for only a few hours.

for the taping, it's just that white medical tape. It's easy to come off if the medics needed to get access to it, and it shouldn't irrate his skin. when i go in for procedures or x-rays, etc.. they tape down my medical bracelet and all my other peircings that can't be removed easily. it's not a big deal. they just kinda wrap a piece of tape around my wrist to keep my bracelet out of the way.

i don't see you needing to tape his rubber one though if it is as tight as you say, mine moves around so the taping is pretty much to prevent that..i doubt his does at all.

I play field hockey, and i've been asked to take it off or tape it up. So i've done both. But I didn't like taking it off because I'm in high school and at away games my family couldn't always be there, so if something were to go wrong, my coaches might not have said something. So i would tape it....However, I understand what you're saying how can you read it?  You would kind of have to have faith in the coaches(or team mates depending on how old your son is.) to remember about the ID bracelet.

Thank you all for your ideas, thoughts, advice, and taking the time to respond.

I sent an e-mail to the league and the response was that he agreed that my son should not remove the bracelet.  "Way to be a thinkin'".

He suggested (just like everyone else) that we tape it up.  So, off to Target I went.  I am now armed with 3 different types and widths of tape.  We'll get these on and see which works best.

I think 10 is too young for a tatoo.

Here's my million dollar idea:  Paper sports tape (that removes easily) that has printing all over it that says "Medical Alert Under".  Do you think Nexcare or Bandaid cares?

Thanks again to you all.  I am amazed at the support given by this group.

[quote user="Daniels Mom"]

Thank you all for your ideas, thoughts, advice, and taking the time to respond.

I sent an e-mail to the league and the response was that he agreed that my son should not remove the bracelet.  "Way to be a thinkin'".

He suggested (just like everyone else) that we tape it up.  So, off to Target I went.  I am now armed with 3 different types and widths of tape.  We'll get these on and see which works best.

I think 10 is too young for a tatoo.

Here's my million dollar idea:  Paper sports tape (that removes easily) that has printing all over it that says "Medical Alert Under".  Do you think Nexcare or Bandaid cares?

Thanks again to you all.  I am amazed at the support given by this group.



if you get the medical tape(surgical tape) they use at the hospital, it's easy enough for the medics to take it off to look at the bracelet, or anyone who needs to take a look, and you can still see it's there. a medic tattoo is useless for everyone. the tape being paper wouldn't really work, what if it gets wet? if they did that, they would need to use actual tape, but there's no reason why you can't use the medical tape and then take a sharpie and write "medical alert under" on it each time.

i heard about this it can break and hurt someone or something like that. i think is total BS but i had to remove my medical ID  necklace during my softbal games so i really cant complain

I've actually never had this problem. If someone tells me to take it of I just say its Medicalert.

I guess if someone insisted that i take it off, even though they knew it was medical, i would

A: Yell at them

B: Ignore them

C: Swear at them

Yes, im immature like that. heh.

I guess you could try negotiating with them...oh! how about bribery? hmmmmmm....

yeah, i guess i would just swear at them, not that im reccomending that.

I recommended bribery.


You know how earrings have safety releases? They have medical alert bands designed for sports too.

There can be dangers to a normal non fast releasing band, you can get injured with them, but with a safe release like these will come right off! This quick release is really what you want, say if someone grabs the band -which is pretty likely in soccer, basket ball and other sports.

While this is a pretty small compromise, sometimes it is best to learn to stand up to some thing, but also acknowledge why some rules are in place. Someday he'll be older and you won't be around, and even if there are other people who know what is happening there are always weird flukes, so that is why it is better to be safe with keeping a band on. After all,,, you may face the same thing later on when you deal with the insulin pump!

When I played soccer in highschool...All jewelry had to be taken off or taped.  It's so that they don't get pulled on during play.  This is just a safety precaution.  You can use masking tape and just tape around the bracelet so that it is secure and can't be yanked.  You can also use a wristband, like the soft ones they use in tennis to cover the bracelet up...But, you have to ask the ref first because some get particular about those as they can also be yanked. 

Btw, masking tape has always been my quick fix since for some reason, I always had some (don't ask)...but coaches always carry some sort of medical tape.  You can even use those ace bandage wraps.  If you're concerned about the Alert showing, as long as the coach and ref know about your son's condition before-hand, they'll know what to do.  If it still worries you, you can always sharpie in w/red ink "Type 1 Diabetes", "Insulin Dependent", "Juvenile Diabetes", "Medical Alert", or something along those lines on whatever you use to cover the bracelet.

i've had that problem in both basketball and soccer in volleyball and cheerleading i take it off cause it gets in my way. i just look at the officals and tell them that i can't get rid of it. It's a medical id if they're good officials that will be enough for them

I would like to know where you got this "rubber" diabetic ID band?? My son prefers the dog-tag style necklace and it definitely must come off for games and practice. I don't think the type band you describe would be a problem with our soccer club and I think my son would like it. Please let me know where to get one. Thanks.

i played basketball when i was younger and used to wear a medical id bracelet....i would just take one of those big nike sweatbands for the wrist and put it right over the bracelet.  only downside is that you cant see the bracelet, but if you were worried about it, you could just get a light colored wristband and write something on it with a sharpie.

probably easier than taping it up every time...and it will look better as well.

You can get one here: or a neoprene one here:

You can google search them, there are so many different sites that sell them.