Making Kids' Sports Safer

Blatant hits and fouls are not necessary in kids' sports; rule changes could make sports safer.

So, the kids are not NFL athletes, and I think we need to-- Their bodies are different. So even with hockey, we know that the way an adult can handle a hit in playing hockey is not the same way as a child. So I think in--in Canada they've changed the rules of Peewee Hockey, so to speak, so certain kinds of hits are just not allowed. I think head-to-head hits in Peewee Football, so to speak, shouldn't be allowed. I don't think you need to have somebody, basically, in a 3-point stance where they're running out from a line with their head first. If you're a big guy--you know--and this is what you're doing for a living, and you know the risks of what you're doing, and you're cognizant of that, it's different than having a 10-year-old do this. So I think there are ways in which football could be made safer. I think--you know--in some sports it's--I think it's blatant fouls in basketball. You know--they should throw them out, okay. Anybody who blatantly takes somebody down should be suspended. You need to have punishment as a way of controlling behavior. I think--you know--I think there are ways to do this to make these things safer, and just by changing the rules.
Posted on BrainLine March 15, 2011.

Produced by Noel Gunther, Ashley Gilleland, Victoria Tilney McDonough, and Brian King.

About the author: Wayne Gordon, PhD

Wayne Gordon, PhD, ABPP/Cn, is the Jack Nash Professor of Rehabilitation Medicine and associate director of the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. He is a neuropsychologist and the director of the Mount Sinai Brain Injury Research Center.

Dr. Wayne Gordon