Childrens Health

Player Welfare (Concussion)

Now that the World Cup has some to an end FIFA needs to look at the safety of players before 2018. First on the list: an adequate, medically-informed assessment of its procedures concerning head injuries, and not just those of Christoph Kramer and Álvaro Pereira. This is called accountability. It is a basic human concern, and FIFA, once again in the spotlight, is silent on a issue that is staring them right in the face.

This year I attended the Acquired Brain Injury seminar and I was astonished to hear from children who had suffered  from contact to the head in sport. Bottom line: players should not have the authority to decide for themselves whether or not it is alright for them to play after sustaining a blow to the head.

Below is some vital information that could help you save someones life. It’s just not worth taking the risk. 

Concussion Signs and Symptoms

Signs Observed By Coaching Staff: 

  • Appear dazed or stunned
  • Is confused about position
  • Forgets an instruction
  • unsure of game details
  • Moves clumsily
  • Answers questions slowly
  • Loses consciousness (even briefly)
  • Show mood/behaviour /Personality Change
  • Forget Events ‘Prior’ to hit or fall
  • Forgets Events ‘After’ hit or fall

“I believe I have sustained over twenty concussions over the past three years but to drop out would have been a sign of weakness.” – BERNARD JACKMAN 

Symptoms Reported By Player: 

  • Headache or Pressure
  • Nausea
  • Balance or Dizziness
  • Double or Blurry Vision
  • Sensitivity to Light/Noise
  • Feeling Sluggish/Hazy/Groggy
  • Concentration/Memory Problems
  • Confusion
  • Does not ‘Feel right’ or ‘Feeling Down’


After an initial concussion the individual should subscribe to complete and utter rest.

  • No Texting
  • No TV/Radio
  • No Computers
  • No Bright Lights
  • No Reading
  • No Physical Exercise
  • No Alcohol
  • No Driving
  • No Exertion of any kind

If a player sleeps after a Concussion, wake them every few hours during the night, or while resting to check their communication.

On the Field Treatment

Orientation – Ask the player the following questions:

  • What Pitch/arena is this?
  • What half/quarter are we in?
  • What city/town is this?
  • What team are we playing?
  • What day is it?

Memory ‘After’ hit – Ask the player to repeat the following:

  • Girl, Dog, Green

Memory ‘Before’ hit – Ask the player to repeat the following:

  • Do you remember the hit?
  • What happened in this half before the hit?
  • What was the score of the game before the hit?

Concentration – Ask the player to repeat the following:

  • Repeat the days of the week backwards (starting today)
  • Repeat these numbers backwards: 63 (36is correct) 419 (914 is correct)

Word list memory – Ask the player to repeat these three words from earlier: Girl, Dog Green


Concussion is a brain injury and players should not return to play until symptom-free and all the test are carried out. Risk of re-injury is high; leading to recurrent concussion; causing long term damage. Should symptoms persist SEEK MEDICAL ADVICE. Don’t take the risk. The game is not worth it!

For more information on concussions go to CONCUSSION.IE 


I always like to hear your opinions and views. If you feel you have something to say, please comment below or email me If, you don’t have anything to add then please forward this on to a friend. As always, thanks for reading.