Concussion Prevention For Contact Sports - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Concussion Prevention For Contact Sports

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MARYLAND - Like many throughout the country, football players at Wicomico High School are back on the field, and the start of the season also means concerns over the sport's safety.

"Every year we deal with a kid who has a concussion," says Pat McGlinchey, head football coach for Wicomico County High School.

While student athletes dying from a blow to the head is rare, the American Association of Neurological Surgeons says sports and recreational activities contribute to about 21 percent of all traumatic brain injuries among American children and adolescents.    

Statistics prompting the Maryland State Department of Education to recommended new safety regulations for contact sports.  Such as limiting the number of contact practices, improving instruction by coaches, and not allowing live hitting until the sixth day of practice.

Steps Wicomico High School teams are already putting in place.

Coach Pat McGlinchey has been at Wi-High for more than a decade.  Since becoming the head coach two years ago, McGlinchey says he's started to do things differently, saying "I don't do the same drills I used to do.  We try to limit our hitting...we do a lot of "thud" where you're not taking the kid all the way down."

"We have to make sure they're prepared and that they know this is a serious thing and people can actually get hurt," says Jordan Lavere, a player for Wicomico High School.

Wicomico County schools will be holding a teaming up for a presentation on concussion safety toward the end of *September* at Parkside High School.

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