Thursday, December 22, 2016

Football: too dangerous for kids?

The Hawkeye's defense lines up against Byron Center.

There is a lot of controversy over whether or not it is safe enough for kids to play football. With so many concussions many parents are starting to worry about letting their kids play in High School and Rocket football

“According to Mott’s Children’s hospital, football is statistically safer than ever,” Hamilton varsity football head coach Chris Meyers said. “The safety issue is not new, football has evolved.  We need to take precautions especially with concussions.  Today, if a kid has even 1 symptom of a concussion, he is out, sent to the trainer etc. Today we have more information and we take more precautions. Every head coach in Michigan, must complete training prior to every season.  This has been the case for the last 4 years.”

Mott’s Children Hospital has videos for parents, high school coaches, and youth coaches to educate people on concussions in sports. For those interested, the videos can be found on their page for concussion education.

For people who receive concussions and want to track their recovery, there’s an app for that. Mott’s Children’s Hospital has the Return 2 Play app designed by a team of experts from the University of Michigan Pediatric Trauma Program and Michigan Neurosport.

Coaches from other schools also have thoughts on the subject.

“I think that football is becoming safer,”  head football coach at Byron Center Marc Cisco said.  “The tough part is that being safer requires diligence not only from coaches and programs, but more importantly from student-athletes and their parent(s)/guardian(s).

“I believe that coaches can only do so much with the short period of time we are involved with our players,” Coach Cisco said. “What our players do once they leave the practice field is just as, if not more important, than what happens during practice. Football is demanding physically and mentally but the things you conquer to compete as a team member are lessons that prepare you for life and a unmatched in any other competitive high school arena.”

(Javin Stutzman played JV football last year; see his opinion here.)

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