Thursday, May 24, 2012

Debate over youth football; concussion vs percausions

In Yesterday's USA TODAY SPORT section an article was posted regarding whether or not  parents should allow their children to play tackle football, and at what age to play vs. the risk of concussions. 

 Many of the comments found below the article were as enlightening about head concussions in youths as the article. It appears there is a true division over safety in youth football. Some parents and adults, in general, felt that if football gear was going to be regulated and how to 'hit', then all sports, including riding a bike, should be banned completely. Then, there were comments comparing football to rugby, the thought process was to forgo all head gear, padding and the like, then there would be less hitting, because as pointed out, rugby players don't use their heads like battering rams.  Lastly, some discussed at what age to play, the suggestion was simple, take the adults out of the game, and let the kids play, they have a better concept of self preservation and aren't likely to play near as rough and tough as they would with parents and coaches yelling at them to put all they've got into the game. 

Then we had those totally agreeing with the children not playing tackle football till they are more developed physically (14ish), and that the younger age children should play flag football. Of course for all children, regardless of age,  how to tackle, fall and be hit would be taught by coaches that believe kids should be playing for the love of the sport not just to win, i.e.,  that they, the kids, do not need to sacrifice their brains for the lack of the coaches'.   

University Press of New England/ Dartmouth College Press are pleased to announce the release of AHEAD OF THE GAME: The Parents' Guide to Youth Sports Concussion by Rosemarie Scolaro Moser, PhD.  Dr. Moser is a neuropsychologist, hockey mom, and director of the Sports Concussion center of New Jersey. She is the official neuropsychologist for Philadelphia Soul Arena Football, Trenton Steel Arena Football, and Trenton Titans Professional Hockey. 

Dr. Moser doesn't tell parents if they should allow their children to play sports or not. Her book is a Parents' guide designed to help parents decide what precautions to take before an injury occurs and how to identify, manage and treat a concussion. AHEAD OF THE GAME enables parents to make decisions and evaluate their child's welfare during their active years in youth sports.

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