Heading a soccer ball may be bad for the brain

13 Jun

“Heading a soccer ball may be bad for the brain” is an important notice to coaches and parents of young children involved in playing soccer. Researchers all over the world that have the equipment to look into the brain chemistry changes involving subconcussive impacts to the brain are all in agreement. Drs. Lipton and Guskiewitcz are well respected researchers and experts in that area of research and have contributed significantly in the study of impacts to the brain in sports.
Subconcussive head impacts between 20 and 100 g’s are asymptomatic and cumulative. After receiving a number of them, the next subconcussive (not concussive) impact may result in a full concussion. The subconcussive impacts are considered more dangerous than an actual concussion. See http://www.forcefieldheadbands.com for other references.
The comments by some of the readers indicate that they have not reviewed the research and findings that go back to the 1970’s up to the present time. Examinations of the brain of former soccer players that were known to head the ball and would up with neurological deficits at an early age were examined. The findings, in all cases, documented both subconcussive and concussive damage to the brain.
You can’t argue with the actual findings that were well documented and published in peer reviewed journals. It may be best to try to understand that we have only one brain and that is the most important organ in our body. Many young players have lost their quality of life receiving brain injuries in soccer. What responsibility do the leagues and coaches have with respect to protecting the developing brains of young children whose brains are not fully developed until they reach the age of 25?
We know that there is not one helmet or headgear in the world that can prevent a concussion. However, all of the coaches are on notice that there is headgear that has been tested and proven in the field that can significantly reduce and dissipate the impact force and reduce the risk of a brain injury.
Protection of the shins in soccer is a requirement. No young soccer player can get on the field without that protection. Protecting the brain and the use of headgear is an option. What part of the body is more important to protect?

The Chart

When compared to the bone-jarring crash between two football helmets, heading a soccer ball might seem almost innocuous. But those seemingly mild hits to a soccer player’s head may damage the brain at a deep, molecular level, according to a new study.

“It’s entirely possible that the innumerable subconcussive hits that those players have may really be a culprit (for brain injury) as well,” said Dr. Michael Lipton, associate director of the Gruss Magnetic Resonance Research Center at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York and the study’s lead author.

The theory gaining ground among many concussion experts is that the unfortunately-named ‘subconcussive’ hits — less-forceful hits that don’t cause an overt concussion — when they accumulate over time, may prove to be more damaging than their more flamboyant cousins.

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