Here at YAKS/FWSC we are committed to the safety of our young athletes. At the end of last year, US Soccer put forth some recommendations to recognize and reduce brain injuries like concussions. Within that discussion, a controversial topic, heading the ball for young athletes, due to weak neck muscles was looked at as one contributing factor. To address these issues YAKS is adopting the Heading policy and implementing a Concussion Awareness Program recommended by US Soccer and our charter US Club soccer.
For ages 10 and under, despite the age group they play in, are asked to refrain from heading in practice and games. For ages 11-13 we are asking you to limit their heading and for practices only, and no restrictions for 14 years and older.
We have added a CDC logo to our home page which takes you directly to the CDC “HEADS UP” program to learn more about concussions. We believe the best way to identify a concussion is for everyone involved being aware of what causes a concussion and the symptoms to look for. Concussions can happen in practice or in a game, and you do not have to lose consciousness. So take the time to learn the facts, and remember one game is not worth a whole season, or long term problems. If a player takes a hard hit to the head or hard fall and a concussion is suspected, remove them immediately from practice or game. A Doctor’s note from a qualified physician after passing a gradual concussion return to play protocol will be required before returning to play.
Remember: “When in Doubt, Sit them Out”
CDC website has facts for Coaches, Parents, Referees, and Athlete’s.