(Editor’s Note. This article was sent out for general release. It was forwarded to the Digest by Dr. Ric Esposito, Chair of Sports Medicine at the United States Sports Academy. Dr. Esposito has been instrumental in bringing Dr. Steve Devick to the Academy in November, 2011 for a seminar on sports injuries. Dr. Devick will address the topic of sports concussion and the use of the simple test he helped create that allows almost anyone to easily diagnosis a concussion on the spot where the impact occurred For more information on the upcoming seminar go to http://ussa.edu ).
Local families and youth sports leaders are demonstrating after a new study shows the numbers of youth concussions are dramatically rising. The study, recently released by the Centers for Disease Control, says almost 250,000 children were taken to the ER with concussions and other brain injuries in 2009, up from just 150,000 in 2002.
- According to the study, the most common sports where kids got head injuries were football and cycling for boys and cycling, basketball and soccer for girls.
- The groups with the most injuries seen were males ages 10 – 19.
That’s why i9 Sports, the nation’s first and fastest growing youth sports franchise with 275 locations in 26 states, has launched the local “Stop Youth Concussions Crusade.” This week and next week, parents, young athletes and coaches will perform visual demonstrations before their flag football games to raise awareness of the dangers of concussions.
“Kids are just not physically developed enough to absorb contact without serious risk of concussion, and the possibility of nerve or brain damage is very real” says Brad Culpepper, former NFL defensive tackle for the Minnesota Vikings, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Chicago Bears. He coached i9 Sports flag football and his sons still play with i9 Sports. Even though Culpepper played for nine years in the NFL, he doesn’t believe in younger children playing tackle football and supports the i9 Sports program.
“Stop Youth Concussions Crusade”
- i9 Sports Leagues play flag football – NO TACKLE because they don’t want their kids playing tackle football at a young age. (Brad Culpepper, Jon Gruden and Jack Del Rio) Former and current NFL coaches and players have/had their children playing i9 Sports
- In soccer –i9 Sports has a . Players 3 – 12 years old don’t have the developmental skills to head the ball properly on the forehead and instead may incorrectly head the ball on the top of the head or on the temple, causing greater risk for concussion. Strict No-Heading Policy
- An athlete in i9 Sports who is suspected of sustaining a concussion or head injury will be removed from the practice or game immediately and will not be allowed to return to play without written clearance from a licensed health care provider.“When in Doubt, Sit Out” Policy
- i9 Sports is the first youth sports organization to institute a Parental Pledge for safety and good sportsmanship. Plus, after each game, one child earns a sportsmanship award for sportsmanship and fair play with teammates and opponents.
- i9 Sports has just added a Concussions Safety Information page to the online registration process that parents must read and sign. i9 Sports has also provided concussion information, signs and symptoms
“With youth concussions on the rise, we had to take a stand for safety,” says Brian Sanders, President and COO of i9 Sports. “It takes more than a team, a coach or a league to make safety changes. It takes a movement.”
FAST FACTS ON CONCUSSIONS:
- Football leads all sports in the occurrence of concussions among children and youth ages 5-18. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, emergency room visits for concussions sustained in organized team sports doubled among kids ages 8-13 between 1997 and 2007.*
- Approximately 3.5 million American children 6-14 play tackle football, even though it is, as described in a 2009 article in Pediatric Radiology, “the most hazardous organized sport in the U.S.”**
- A study just released at the American Orthopedic Society for Sports Medicine – calls for all teen athletes to be tested for concussions as a baseline analysis BEFORE the sports season so they’re accurately diagnosed if they suffer a concussion during the season. New Sports Concussion Assessment Tool http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/356122
- From 2001 to 2005, more than 502,000 emergency visits were due to concussions in children between the ages of 8 and 19 years. Approximately half of these visits were a result of concussions related to organized sports.** latest stats available
- An estimated 1.6 – 3.8 million sports and recreation related concussions occur in the U.S. each year.***
- Of the 1.4 million traumatic brain injuries sustained by children and adults in the U.S. each year, at least 75% are mild and/or concussions.***
* Official Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics
** Pediatric Radiology
**Safe Kids Coalition
***Brain Injury Association of America
Because each league is individually owned and operated by carefully screened and certified local franchise owners, participants enjoy the many benefits of a well-organized national sports organization with a personal touch in the local community.
Entrepreneur Magazine ranked i9 Sports #256 in the prestigious Franchise 500® issue and the 15th Top New Franchise in America; while the Franchise Business Review named i9 Sports the #1 Sports, Recreation, & Fitness franchise.
CEO Frank Fiume founded i9 Sports from his passion for youth sports and a desire to create a fun alternative to other youth sports leagues. Anyone wanting more information can contact the following persons:
Graham Chapman firstname.lastname@example.org 919.459.8157
Sue Yannello email@example.com 919.459.8163