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"Back in the Game": A Concussion Book That Stands Out In a Crowded Field

 

Back in the Game book cover

While the pile of concussion books in my office continues to grow taller, seemingly with every passing day, one that will stay at the top of the very short pile of my favorites is Back in the Game: Why Concussion Doesn't Have To End Your Athletic Career (Oxford University Press, New York 2016) by sports neurologist Jeffrey Kutcher, M.D., and award-winning sports journalist Joanne Gerstner.

While the pile of concussion books in my office continues to grow taller, seemingly with every passing day, one that will stay at the top of the very short pile of my favorites is Back in the Game: Why Concussion Doesn't Have To End Your Athletic Career (Oxford University Press, New York 2016) by sports neurologist Jeffrey Kutcher, M.D., and award-winning sports journalist Joanne Gerstner.

Why I'm Not a Football Apologist or Anti-Football Zealot: I'm a Pro-Safety Realist


As I await tonight's advance screening in Boston of Sony Pictures' movie, Concussion, which opens nationwide on Christmas Day, the polarized debate over football has once again reached a fever pitch.

In contrast to recent battles in the now 110-year war over football MomsTEAM Institute of Youth Sports Safety, the non-profit I have headed for the last fifteen years, is not merely an interested spectator this time around.

That's because Sony Pictures chose the Institute as its partner in its Dance or Donate #ForThePlayers social media campaign; an initiative designed not just to publicize the movie but to promote our 15-year effort to make youth football and all sports safer (which is why the Institute is hosting the Boston screening)

With the Boston advance screening of Concussion tonight and the nationwide release just three days away, MomsTEAM's Executive Director explains why she's not a football apologist, CTE denier, or anti-football zealot but is, and always has been, a pro-safety pragmatist.

Pediatrics Group's Position on Tackling in Youth Football Strikes Right Balance

Last month, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) endorsed efforts to limit contact practices in youth football, but declined to make a clear recommendation in favor of delaying the age at which tackling is introduced. The AAP likewise refused to support those calling for an outright ban on tackling in football for athletes below age 18, unwilling to recommend at this time such a fundamental change in the way the game is played.

As someone who has been working for 15 years to make youth football safer, MomsTEAM's Executive Director was glad to see the nation's largest and most prestigious pediatrics group support so many of the evidence- and expert consensus-based recommendations MomsTEAM has been making to improve the safety of the game.

U.S. Failure To Ratify UN Convention on Rights of the Child Is Embarrassing and Unacceptable

ORIGINALLY POSTED IN HUFFINGTON POST 10/9/15 

A longtime advocate for ratification of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child by the United States working to implement the 2014 International Safeguards for Children in Sport, says that the country's failure to ratify the Convention is embarrassing and unacceptable.

Camp Lessons...One Student Athlete's Journey


Meet Allie, an incoming junior, high school and club soccer player and client of The College Program.  This summer Allie had the privilege to attend two soccer camps back-to-back in Colorado.  We interviewed Allie about her experience, how she prepared herself for these camps, what she learned during the camps and what she is going to do with this knowledge moving forward.
how she prepared herself for these camps, what she learned during the camps and what she is going to do with this knowledge moving forward.

Texas Youth Football Program: Ten Ways It Is Walking The Talk On Safety

Participation in youth sports in general, and in youth football in particular, is on the decline in some parts of the nation.  One of the biggest factors driving the decline is a concern about injuries. 

Lots of youth sports programs say they want to improve safety, but how many are actually making the effort to implement best health and safety practices?

Lots of youth sports programs say they want to improve safety, but how many are actually making the effort to implement best health and safety practices? I can't speak for every program, but I know one that is definitely walking the talk: the youth tackle and flag football and cheer program in Grand Prairie, Texas, where I spent the first week of August educating and training kids, parents, coaches, and administrators on ways to make football safer as part of MomsTEAM Institute's SmartTeams| UNICEF International Safeguards of Children in Sports project.

Power of the Permit: Improving Youth Sports Safety One Municipality at a Time

 

If you are involved in a private youth sports program which plays on publicly-owned fields, diamonds, rinks, or courts, or are in local government, you have probably been hearing a lot lately about what is being dubbed the "power of the permit": the authority municipalities and towns around the country are using to condition use of their athletic facilities by private programs on compliance with state concussion safety laws from which they would otherwise be exempt, or, in an increasing number of instances, to fill gaps in their state's law.

A growing number of municipalities are using the power of the permit to require private sports programs to comply with state-mandated concussion safety laws, or impose additional conditions beyond those required by state law, but, as MomsTEAM Institute Executive Director explains, it isn't an isolated or new phenomenon. It's been a growing trend for years.

MomsTeam Awarded NCAA-DOD Mind Matters Challenge Educational Grant

On July 15, the NCAA and Department of Defense (DOD) announced the selection of MomsTeam Youth Sports Safety Institute as a recipient of a Mind Matters Challenge grant for our application, Creating a Safe Concussion Reporting Environment: A Multi-Media Approach.

The NCAA and Department of Defense (DOD) have selected MomsTeam Youth Sports Safety Institute as one of six winners of a Mind Matters Challenge grant for our application, Creating a Safe Concussion Reporting Environment: A Multi-Media Approach.

In-Depth Discussion of Concussions In The Age Of Twitter: Is It Possible?

One of my biggest gripes about the media in the age of Twitter and ever-shorter attention spans is that it doesn't lend itself well to an examination of issues in the depth they deserve.  

Recently, I was asked a series of questions by a newspaper journalist for a story on a concussed athlete who had decided to quit football despite being cleared by the team doctor to return to play.

Even though I knew that 95% of what I said in my emailed response would never make it into the story, I nevertheless spent the time formulating thoughtful responses, hoping that at least some of what I offered would avoid the cutting room floor.

One of the things that MomsTEAM Founder Brooke de Lench finds most frustrating about the media in the age of Twitter and ever-shorter attention spans is that it doesn't lend itself well to an examination of issues in the depth they deserve. Here's a case in point.

Female Coaches At FIFA Women's World Cup: Do They Have Natural Advantages Over Men?

If you've been watching the FIFA Women's World Cup, you may have noticed that the head coaches of most of the 24 national teams competing in Canada are men. In fact, only seven teams (the USA, Ecuador, Germany, Costa Rica, Switzerland, Sweden, and Ivory Coast) are led by female head coaches.

While that number is five more than when I watched from the stands at Giants Stadium as the U.S. played Mexico in the 1999 Women's World Cup, it is still a distressingly low number.

If you've been watching the FIFA Women's World Cup, you may have noticed that the head coaches of most of the 24 national teams competing in Canada are men, a gender imbalance that persists despite what some believe to be natural advantages women enjoy over men as coaches.
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