Colorado Avalanche: Facing Concussions in Modern Hockey

10 of 30

View image |

Before Their Prime

There are starting to become a lot of guys standing with Sidney Rice, who left football during the peak of his career.

A number of high-profile, promising athletic careers including Patrick Willis, Justin Smith, Chris Borland, Anthony Davis and Adrian Coxson have all walked away from the game in the past two seasons citing head injuries as one of the main (if not the singular) reasons why they ceased their involvement with football.

Studies from Boston University have shown the traumatic magnitude of the impacts aren’t just limited to the adult leagues either. In cases with children as young as nine-years old, studies have found the force of collisions from impacts have the same ratio of force to the players as those in college football.

Youth tackle football, which generally starts in most youth leagues between the ages of 7-12 (depends on the league) happens  to coincide with one of the most critical windows of time in a child’s brain development.

Published medical journal studies from the National Institute of Health have examined the brains of children who have suffered from RHI (Repeated Head Injuries) during this age range and compared them to forty former NFL players using resonance diffusion tensor imaging and found troubling results.

The age at which these head traumas start to occur, especially during periods of brain development, can cause long-term damage similar to what has been found in former NFL athletes.

Next: Not Just Big Hits