Sanford Research Study Shows Decreased Head Impacts Of Youth Football


SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO) – A local study could have an impact on youth football in the United States. It turns out that the right kind of training can be just as important as a good helmet.

Sanford researchers spent eight years studying youth football.

“So a lot of people are wondering, is it safe? More dangerous now than in the past, or is it safer? Principal investigator of the study, said Thayne Munce.

For the study, the players wore sensors mounted on the helmet. From 2012 to 2019, there was a 79% decrease in head impacts.

“Our outcome measures were primarily focused on these head impact frequency numbers. We also looked at the severity metrics, but the big changes we saw were in the number of impacts players were getting, ”Munce said.

Researchers say players and coaches may have played a role in this change.

During training, coaches focused on teaching children to keep their heads physically out of play to avoid injury.

“The way coaches teach the game and instruct the game, as well as the way players play and move, and how they attack and how they block,” Munce said.

“We are all required to do training every year with USA Football so we have had coaches in the past that have come out and we go through all the drills and skills that we are going to teach the kids,” youth football said. coach Ryan Mediger.

This training resonates with the players.

“Get off, get off. Keep your head up. You don’t want to drop your head and walk into someone else just with your head. Just for me, keep your head up, get down, ”said player Cason Mediger.

“They teach us to put our shoulder in them instead of our head. Keep your head out of the game, ”said player Tyson Sycz.

All the techniques which ensure the safety of the players on the field.

“It’s our goal to be safe and to work with children and to make sure that they are not only safe when hitting, but that they are hydrated in hot weather and so on. more, ”said JJ, president of South Dakota Junior Football. Kieso said.

And now there is proof that it makes a difference.

Munce says they will continue to study head impacts and have already started this year. To learn more about the study, you can find it here.


Paul N. Strickland

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