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Practicing Without Helmets Could Make Football Safer For Players



(Reuters Well being) – For school soccer gamers, training with out helmets and shoulder pads would possibly lend a hand scale back the choice of head affects in later practices and video games, a brand new examine indicates.

“The idea that of working towards drills tackling and blocking off with no helmet on is novel to the game of American soccer,” stated lead writer Erik E. Swartz of the School of New Hampshire.

“I performed rugby for a variety of years and we don’t put on helmets, in fact, in rugby,” Swartz informed Reuters Well being through telephone. “So that you don’t lead together with your head.”

Soccer gamers who’re used to doing the whole thing with their helmets on would possibly really feel they’re safe, and be extra comfy top with their heads while tackling, he stated. Taking out the helmets even in short may just dispose of that fake feel of safety.

The iconic risks of concussions have turn out to be a scorching-button matter each for pro athletes and for folks and coaches of faculty-age gamers.

Peter Landesman, director of soccer head trauma movie “Concussion” that premiered on Christmas Day, advised Reuters ultimate week that American soccer could also be within the early ranges of “a seismic shift” as oldsters are dissuaded from letting their youngsters play soccer amid protection considerations.

Swartz and his coauthors divided 50 NCAA Department 1 soccer gamers on the School of New Hampshire into teams. Part did 5-minute tackling drills with out their helmets and shoulder pads as a part of the Helmetless Tackling Coaching (HuTT) software two times every week all the way through preseason practices and as soon as every week right through the 3 month season.

The opposite 25 gamers persisted with noncontact drills and their same old regimen, as said within the Magazine of Athletic Coaching.

Head have an effect on sensors at the pores and skin and helmets of the gamers confirmed that folks that did the helmetless drills had 30 % fewer head affects in keeping with apply and recreation than the comparability staff.

Within the helmetless tackling workforce, head affects consistent with apply or recreation fell from virtually 14 within the preseason duration to ten on the finish of the season. On the finish of the season, gamers within the comparability workforce have been nonetheless having greater than 14 head affects in keeping with recreation or apply.

“To get it at the first check out inside the first examine used to be very, very fun and inspiring,” Swartz stated.

Department 1 school soccer gamers are elite athletes. They appear to have made changes of their play with just one or helmetless drills a week, however the similar way will not be as efficient for different ranges of play, he stated.

“Sooner or later what we are hoping is to advance a software on any degree of play, highschool, school or professional, of a tradition method with out the helmet,” along with doing drills with the apparatus on, he stated.

For now, it’s too quickly for coaches to take a look at to put in force the program themselves.

“I wouldn’t need other folks to determine it out on their very own, simply as a result of the complexity,” Swartz stated.

“We’re now not in a position to do any more or less fashionable implementation,” he stated.

With most effective 50 school gamers in those mentioned effects, there have been too few members to take a look at exact accidents, however that’s one thing Swartz and his colleagues wish to do one day with higher research of highschool and school gamers, he stated.

Prior to now, so much head damage prevention methods have desirous about designing higher helmets that reduce concussion possibility, he stated.

“I’m now not pronouncing that having a greater helmet is one thing we shouldn’t do, nevertheless it’s handiest going to additional give a contribution to this fake feel of safety,” Swartz stated.

SOURCE: bit.ly/1JchB1p The Magazine of Athletic Coaching, on-line December 10, 2015.

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