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Chronic Under-Reporting Of Concussion: Is Changing The Culture A Realistic Solution?

 

If your child plays a contact or collision sport, whether at be at the youth, middle school or high school level, odds are that at some point in their athletic career they will suffer a concussion. How well they recover depends a lot on how quickly their concussion is identified so they can be removed from practice or game action. 

A lot of student-athletes - a declining percentage, fortunately - don't appreciate precisely when they have suffered a concussion. There are a lot of reasons:

Most athletes won't self-report concussion symptoms to sideline personnel, much less voluntarily remove themselves from the game. Changing the culture is one way to address the problem of chronic under-reporting, but it can't be counted on as a panacea.

Stiffening Penalties For Violent Hits By Minnesota Hockey League Important Step In Improving Player Safety

 

This past weekend, the MInnesota State High School League took an unprecedented step of changing the rules mid-season, by stiffening the penalties on three of the most violent and dangerous infractions in hockey: checking from behind, boarding and contact to the head will now result in an automatic five-minute "major" against the offending player resulting in ejection and forcing his team to play short-handed for five minutes, regardless of how many times it is scored upon during the ensuing power play. 

By stiffening the rules against dangerous play in ice hockey and giving referees less discretion in calling penalties, the Minnesota State High School League has taken an important first step to reduce the number of catastrophic injuries in the sport.

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