Football is a leading sport amongst kids- with almost one million players in the youth category!
But with football leading the category in injuries, parents are moving their children into other sports. This is why other sports for kids, such as soccer, is growing.
Is Youth Football Worth the Risk?
Many parents see the inherent risks of youth football. According to a recent study from Virginia Tech-Wake Forest, youth league football kids take more hits than people have estimated. The study showed that among youth players ages 7-8 years old, during practice, these kids took 9 hits per practice (on average) and 11 hits per game.
Although the study was very small, none of the kids got concussions. While good news, some of the hits were at a level of force that presents a high risk for injury.
Overall, the study showed support for football coaches to ease up on hitting during practice.
This new study resonates after a high school team in western New York canceled the remainder of it’s football season after a player died a few days after a head injury during a football game. The Westfiel-Brocton teams are offering support to players and students following the death of Damon James a junior who died from the helmet to helmet hit during the game. According to the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research at the University of North Carolina, Janes' death was the second tragedy related to football injuries in less than a month.
He walked from the sidelines and died three days later. What’s more surprising is the fact that James walked back to the sidelines before he left via ambulance to the hospital.
Both of my boys played soccer instead of football, not by a conscious choice but rather because they asked to play.
As parents we have the responsibility to help guide our children safely to adulthood. Do your boys play football and are you concerned as a parent? Or are you sitting on the sideline?