Two Louisiana lawmakers are calling for a federal study to examine how to prevent fatal injuries among high school football players. The desire for an inquiry comes after several deaths across the nation, including one in Louisiana.
The High School Football Safety Study Act will task the Centers for Disease Control, the Department of Education and the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition to make recommendations for keeping our youngest athletes safe from devastating injuries. If the law is passed by Congress and signed by President Obama, it would signal the beginning of a nationwide push to end these preventable tragedies.
Earlier in September, a 16-year-old high school student from Louisiana died after breaking his neck during a play. The young athlete is one of eight to die from football-related injuries in the last eight months.
Football has become associated with brain, spinal cord and abdominal injuries. Legislators are looking for ways to educate coaches, parents and trainers to detect the early warning signs of these injuries.
Injury Detection Can Save the Lives of Football Players
Although it is possible to spot athletes who have sustained brain injuries, some may be reluctant to admit they are hurt. A former Mississippi high school football player recently spoke to the New York Times about his experience suffering five concussions in 14 months, often attempting to hide symptoms so he could return to the game. What the man did not know, is that sustaining two concussions in a row could have ended his life. Second-impact syndrome, or sustaining two concussions in a row, can prove fatal.
This is only one example of many that federal organizations will take into consideration if this new piece of legislation passes.