Awareness of concussions as a serious health risk in sports, particularly youth sports, has quickly grown in recent years. Many coaches and athletic officials recognize that contact sports, particularly hockey and football, pose risks of seriously debilitating injuries to players. This awareness has also brought an understanding of the extensive recovery needs of athletes suffering from concussions. That said, athletes continue to sustain concussions at an alarming rate. Training and education regarding concussions and traumatic head injuries are mandatory for coaches in several states, including Connecticut. Personal injury attorneys are helping injured athletes obtain compensation for damages when their injuries result from negligence or defective equipment.
An article published recently in a Canadian medical journal addressed concussions among young hockey players in very blunt terms, asking if such concussions amount to “child abuse.” Hockey officials have reportedly implemented new rules, including a “no tolerance” rule prohibiting contact with a player's head. Officials are also promoting education about how to prevent concussions and how to properly treat a player suffering from one. Whether these measures are enough remains to be seen.