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Concussion Bill of Rights #2: Coaches Need To Be Part of Solution, Not the Problem

While there are many coaches who take concussions very seriously, there are still far too many in this country, from youth football, hockey, soccer, lacrosse or basketball all the way up the ladder to the professional level, who:

Doping in Track & Field: Is Everyone on the "Juice"?

Now I'm no expert on the scientific specifics of performance-enhancing drugs. Although I'll admit to a know-it-all streak in me that makes it very difficult for me to say these three words: "I don't know." (As my husband always tells me, it's okay sometimes just to say ‘I don't know.' The rest of us realize that you don't actually know EVERYTHING.") One thing I'm proud to say I'm no expert on doping. Once I found out what steroids could do to me- I mean the things that would be hard for a woman to accept like the facial hair and husky voice- all I wanted to know about steroids was how to stay away from them.

Sometimes a Game Is Just That: A Game

My daughter and her friends are typical 7th graders. When they find a new activity they like, they dive in head first leaving all other activities behind in the splash. Doesn't matter if they also are involved with trumpet, violin, piano, biking, rock climbing, drama, cooking, ballet, fencing, or any other activity. Doesn't matter that they have homework and the need for some free time and family time. To this age group, a new activity is like falling in love - it becomes their be all, end all.

Concussion Right #1: Pre-Season Safety Meeting

The best way to ensure that athletes who suffer concussions playing sports have the best possible outcome in both the short and long term is to educate them and their parents about the importance of self-reporting and the parent's role in the critical return to play decision.

Team Approach to Concussions

In late April 2008, I attended the National Sports Concussion Summit in Marina Del Rey, California. It was indeed an honor to have been asked to participate in this conference and to be the keynote speaker to an audience filled with a veritable who's who in the world of concussions in sports.

Even Olympians Were Once Kids...and Some Were Allowed To Act Like Them!

Reading this story a couple of months ago was music to my ears! Ryan Lochte, an elite, Olympic swimmer did not lift weights as a kid. Was his dad a visionary or just being overly cautious?

Playing from the Same Playbook on Concussions

It is my belief that parents have a right to expect, when they entrust their children to a sports program - whether it be Pee Wee hockey, youth lacrosse, Olympic development soccer, or high school football - that it will take reasonable precautions to protect them against harm. In other words, parents have a right to expect that the entire team to whom they entrust their children's safety - including the national governing body for the child's sport, the state association, the athletic or club director, the athletic trainer (if there is one), and especially the coaches - are part of the concussion solution, not part of the problem.

Okay to Fail

Got to know another single sports mom, Kim, at a conference in New York City last week. There is a sense of worlds crashing into each other when this happens – we were striking up a conversation about our mutual profession (teaching writing at college level) and ended up sharing anecdotes about kids’ elite sports.

Chasing Blue Ribbons

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