As a coach and father of two active children, I fear concussions more than any other on-field injury. An ankle can heal, in time. A knee will get better. But there’s just no telling the extent or longevity of the damage caused by head trauma caused by rapid acceleration of the brain inside the skull.

The scariest thing of all is that it’s so simple. And innocuous. It’s a bang on the goal post with your head. A hard hit ball to the face. It’s knocking heads with an opponent – that’s it. And the faster the games are played, the greater the velocity and power, the higher the likelihood of a concussion. It’s no surprise that middle schools in the area require training.

Yet that’s not enough – not nearly.

There’s a stigma that tags along – a “play through it and toughen up” attitude that has no place in youth athletics. No child should ever say that they’ve suffered multiple concussions through sport. Not a single one. Yet still we put our daughters and sons out there to play soccer without the appropriate head gear or safeguards.

It’s an especially acute problem in girls’ soccer. According to an article published earlier this year on the Washington Post, “only football and boys’ hockey players report concussions at a higher rate than girls’ soccer players.” WaPo claims that the data comes from a High School RIO, an injury surveillance system built by Dr. Dawn Comstock of the Colorado School of Public Health. The data found that “since 2008, high school girls’ soccer players have reported an average of 14 concussions per 10,000 games played…nearly twice the average for boys’ soccer.”

Get your children trained, and consider the use of headgear, or other safety devices. Check out the below link for additional resources, and see the list concussion training events for Ronald Reagan and Bull Run Middle Schools.

U.S. Soccer: Concussions

–Schedule–
REAGAN MIDDLE SCHOOL
Wednesday, September 3, 2014
6:00 p.m. & 7p.m.
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
6:00 p.m.
Wednesday, January 21, 2015
6:00 p.m.
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
6:00 p.m.

BULL RUN MIDDLE SCHOOL
Wednesday, September 3, 2014
6:00 p.m.
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
6:00 p.m.
Tuesday, January 20, 2015
6:00 p.m.
Tuesday, March 17, 2015
6:00 p.m.