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Should parents worry about their kids playing football?

Should parents worry about their kids playing football?

I’m a pretty big football fan – and I consider it a source of pride that both my daughters were able to do the touchdown and first-down signals before they could talk. As much as I love watching and sharing the sport with my girls, though, I’m not sure I would ever let my children actually play football. And I don’t think I’m alone.

Today’s Motherlode talks about the issue of football and safety and links to a terrific Grantland article on concussions in high-school football. In that piece, writer Jonah Lehrer talks about the sport’s tragic flaw, “which is that it inflicts concussions on its players with devastating frequency” and wonders whether such things as “nervous parents reading about brain trauma” and doctors’ warnings about possible risks will lead to the demise of football. He also dedicates a section to a discussion on whether the sport can be saved – and to me, the jury is still out on that question.

Previously: A conversation with Daniel Garza about football and concussions, Deceased athletes’ brains reveal the effects of head injuries, When can athletes return to play? Stanford researchers provide guidance and New concussion guidelines for NFL players
Photo by Trippography

One Response to “ Should parents worry about their kids playing football? ”

  1. Justin Says:

    Great article Michelle! I blog for a site called CoachUp; we recently published an article tying the recent NFL concussion lawsuit to the concern about athlete safety at all levels, especially youth sports. Our collective opinion (the CoachUp staff, that is) lacks a parental perspective. We’d be thrilled if some of the sports moms and dads could weigh in on the question we pose; to be brief, we wonder whether concussions, although admittedly very dangerous, are just a normal risk for contact sport participants. That is, whether one should acknowledge the risk and take necessary precautions (i.e. equipment) but not alter the way the game is played.

    Here’s a link to the post… http://blog.coachup.com/2012/06/08/concussions-impacting-professional-and-youth-athletes-alike/

    I look forward to hearing your thoughts, either on this thread or in the comment section of our blog!

    Best,
    Justin

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