The 5 People Responsible for Concussion Safety

By Dan Guttenplan, FNF Coaches Managing Editor

Evan Peck, MD, is a sports medicinephysician in the Section of Sports Health of the Levitetz Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Cleveland Clinic Florida. He said five people must work together in helping to reduce concussions.

  1. Coaches. Teach proper tackling and blocking. Get USA Football certified and run schemes that stress player safety. For instance, the West Coast Offense with short crossing routes is said to result in more concussions than other schemes.
  2. Players. Don’t be reckless. Defeat an opponent without causing a head injury. Practice proper tackling and blocking techniques. Respect your opponents.
  3. League administrators. Draft rules to disallow helmet-to-helmet hits, blows to a defenseless receiver, and stricter enforcement of late hits.
  4. Officials. Enforce the rules, educate the players and coaches regarding safety. State clear expectations to both teams before the opening kickoff.
  5. Equipment managers. Be sure that players are wearing safe equipment as dictated by league rules. The role of the equipment in preventing concussions is modest and should not be emphasized.

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