Wednesday, April 04, 2018

Youth football and brain damage

From the NY Times:

...California state lawmakers are being asked to bar children under 12 from playing organized tackle football — a requirement supporters say will protect their brains from unnecessary injury and trauma...

A fact sheet in support of the bill — known as the Safe Youth Football Act — says children who wait until they are 12 to play tackle football decrease their risk of “life-impacting brain damage” by 50 percent. Doctors have also noted that head hits are more damaging to young players because their brains are not fully developed, and are less capable of fully repairing themselves. Similar legislation has been proposed in Illinois, Maryland and New York, officials said.

But passing anti-football laws, even at the state level, can be an uphill battle. Despite a decline in youth football participation over the past decade, the sport remains very popular. A Facebook group titled Save Youth Football — California already has more than 4,000 members. On the page, critics of the proposed law call it government overreach, share stories about the value of football and question the research into its harm...(California Today: Is This the End of Youth Football?)

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