Tag Archives: Matt Chaney

Repost: Matt Chaney’s Take on Heads Up Football

21 Feb

The following was posted here on TCB 10/24/13, I feel with the traffic it has been garnering that it should be reposted at the top of the cue for the time being.  It is worth comment and questions…

The post below is from Matt Chaney’s Blog, re-posted (in part) here with his permission.  We are posting it here not as an endorsement, rather as an opposing view that is worth the read.  Our commentary on this article by Chaney will be below this post.  We encourage everyone to see the entire post on his blog.  You can view it by clicking on the hotlink, it is titled; ‘Heads Up Football’: Truth, Tales and Legal Consequences.  *Chaney has moved his blog and we are efforting the current link of his original article.  However, he does read the comments from time to time so if you have question leave it here and he may get to it.

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By Matt Chaney

Posted Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Peter King posits bogus hitting technique as Safer Football in Sports Illustrated

—geezuz, the further we go in this latest football crisis, the worse many people become, willingly, on behalf of the sexy blood sport… and so Peter King of SI skips along, telling us bona fide prevention is possible for football’s irreversible head-ramming… a new post by the Hall of Fame football scribe portrays Heads Up ‘proper contact’ as legitimate; King purports this theoretical headless hitting can be instilled by coaches, enforced by referees, adopted by players… I’d like to see King demonstrate on a football field, suited-up himself for forward collisions governed by physics and bullet-head helmets; he’d ram, too, or get his ass kicked… look, folks, players cannot govern or stop ramming on a football field; rather, forces of the crazy game dictate human behavior… forget talk and trust your eyesight, especially naïve parents and kids, to understand Heads Up ‘technique’ is invalid, unreliable, a lienothing new: it’s mere rehash of musty old ‘head up’ form hitting, proven invalid since the 1960s… here’s King, introducing his discussion:

What’s been eye-opening to discover is the trickle-down effect from the NFL to youth football. As the pro league emphasizes safety more and more, so do high schools around America. … Coaches are concerned; 41 of 49 polled [by SI] said they have modified training techniques because of increased education about concussions and head trauma.

—sure, trickle-down effect will reform football danger, once again… solution for brain trauma in the collision game is just around the corner… like trickle-down ‘steroid awareness’ for football’s immense problem with anabolic substances…  King continues:

Several high school coaches emphasized the NFL teaching new tackling techniques, such as “Heads Up Football,” which teaches coaches to train kids to tackle with heads up—instead of using the helmet as a battering ram. Said Middlebury Union (Vt.) coach Dennis Smith: “In any drills we’re doing—whether it be fundamental drills at the beginning of practices, especially defensive practices—we’re always stressing head up. You have to be able to see what you’re tackling.” … Said Brandon (Miss.) coach Brad Peterson: “We always start the year, whether spring or fall, with walking through the proper techniques of tackling.” … The coach of E.O. Smith High in Storrs, Conn., Jody Minotti, said he knows he can’t prevent every concussion, but he trains his players to minimize the risks. “We do less contact throughout the week and we teach proper tackling,” said Minotti. “We preach in practice all of the time, ‘Bite the ball. Bite the ball.’ That means keep your head up and don’t ever lead with your helmet. We film tackling, we talk about tackling whenever we’re watching film.”

—huh, these coaches don’t address the facemask dilemma, the prime fault of football rules behind the charade of Continue reading

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Interesting Take On Tackling

26 Dec

I have been fortunate to be in some great email “groups” with information that surrounds the playing of sports.  Of course I have been attracted to concussion and those ancillary problems surrounding the brain injury.  It not only furthers, the some time outrageous, fodder but it also provides some critical thinking.

Matt Chaney has been doing a great job of circulating information – mainly about football – and from time to time I get some links that I feel would be best shared for “group thought process”.  A quick aside: Chaney’s blog has been removed from cyberspace due to some confounding issues on the user end, but he will dredge up his information in the coming weeks and re-launch his blog.  Back to the post…

Here is how Chaney describes this forthcoming link:

–super piece by a very interesting writer, an outstanding athlete-scribe, Doug Brown in Canada, former CFL D-lineman… he nails NFL rule-making as lousy lipstick on the pig… great points on the folly of ‘proper form’ or Heads Up or ‘safe tackling’ especially in the head-on avenues of football contact, or the ‘allies’ on-field, as Brown refers…. the tunnel effect of forward contact… though I don’t see any wall-in by other players as necessary for a head-on collision; it’s all about angles of intersecting opponents, and all you need are two principals incoming, ballcarrier and tackler, each with his mission…. boom!…. Doug Brown

I share his sentiments on the article, it brings to light some of the things we CANNOT get rid of in current football.  But does that make the game “unsafe”?  That is the penultimate question; further if it is a problem how can it even be solved?

Here is an excerpt from Doug Brown’s article that appeared in the Winnipeg Free Press;

When an offensive and defensive player meet in an alley, the options for tackling from an angle, or putting your head to the side of the ball carrier are absent. Instinct and self preservation in football tells a ball carrier to lower his head and shoulder pads when he anticipates a collision. Hitting a ball carrier above Continue reading

Matt Chaney’s Take on Heads Up Football

24 Oct

The post below is from Matt Chaney’s Blog, re-posted (in part) here with his permission.  We are posting it here not as an endorsement, rather as an opposing view that is worth the read.  Our commentary on this article by Chaney will be below this post.  We encourage everyone to see the entire post on his blog.  You can view it by clicking on the hotlink, it is titled; ‘Heads Up Football': Truth, Tales and Legal Consequences.

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By Matt Chaney

Posted Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Peter King posits bogus hitting technique as Safer Football in Sports Illustrated

—geezuz, the further we go in this latest football crisis, the worse many people become, willingly, on behalf of the sexy blood sport… and so Peter King of SI skips along, telling us bona fide prevention is possible for football’s irreversible head-ramming… a new post by the Hall of Fame football scribe portrays Heads Up ‘proper contact’ as legitimate; King purports this theoretical headless hitting can be instilled by coaches, enforced by referees, adopted by players… I’d like to see King demonstrate on a football field, suited-up himself for forward collisions governed by physics and bullet-head helmets; he’d ram, too, or get his ass kicked… look, folks, players cannot govern or stop ramming on a football field; rather, forces of the crazy game dictate human behavior… forget talk and trust your eyesight, especially naïve parents and kids, to understand Heads Up ‘technique’ is invalid, unreliable, a lienothing new: it’s mere rehash of musty old ‘head up’ form hitting, proven invalid since the 1960s… here’s King, introducing his discussion:

What’s been eye-opening to discover is the trickle-down effect from the NFL to youth football. As the pro league emphasizes safety more and more, so do high schools around America. … Coaches are concerned; 41 of 49 polled [by SI] said they have modified training techniques because of increased education about concussions and head trauma.

—sure, trickle-down effect will reform football danger, once again… solution for brain trauma in the collision game is just around the corner… like trickle-down ‘steroid awareness’ for football’s immense problem with anabolic substances…  King continues:

Several high school coaches emphasized the NFL teaching new tackling techniques, such as “Heads Up Football,” which teaches coaches to train kids to tackle with heads up—instead of using the helmet as a battering ram. Said Middlebury Union (Vt.) coach Dennis Smith: “In any drills we’re doing—whether it be fundamental drills at the beginning of practices, especially defensive practices—we’re always stressing head up. You have to be able to see what you’re tackling.” … Said Brandon (Miss.) coach Brad Peterson: “We always start the year, whether spring or fall, with walking through the proper techniques of tackling.” … The coach of E.O. Smith High in Storrs, Conn., Jody Minotti, said he knows he can’t prevent every concussion, but he trains his players to minimize the risks. “We do less contact throughout the week and we teach proper tackling,” said Minotti. “We preach in practice all of the time, ‘Bite the ball. Bite the ball.’ That means keep your head up and don’t ever lead with your helmet. We film tackling, we talk about tackling whenever we’re watching film.”

—huh, these coaches don’t address the facemask dilemma, the prime fault of football rules behind the charade of Heads Up, ‘proper contact,’ ‘head up technique,’ ‘anti-butting’ or whatever term… this toothless policy and language have been a football mandate since 1976, for high schools and the NCAA… the rules specifically ban Continue reading

Matt Chaney – Tireless Worker

18 Jan

SpringGame1984Sideline
If you have been around enough you have seen the stylings of Matt Chaney on this blog, he is someone I call a friend.  In some circles that discounts me as a professional, which is both stupid and dumb.  I don’t always agree with Matt, heck him and I have been known to battle via electronic and phone communications.  However, his opinion is a valuable one – often his work is based in so much fact it makes your head spin as to why some of its missed.  Regardless, Matt has published two recent articles on his blog, for all to consume, here are some excerpts.

Part 1, published January 7th;

Historic football excuses thrive in modern debate over brutality

Lawsuits, criticism explode and officials project blame onto individuals

Old talking points of football apology resonate yet as officials tout anti-concussion measures like trainers along sidelines, new rules for safer play, injury reduction and expert consultation—same type of promises heard from gridiron leaders during the Victorian Era

American football gets lambasted in public for maiming and killing, denounced by an influential movement of critics, and game officials pledge safer play based on their new concepts of prevention, including:

*Qualified trainers and doctors will patrol sidelines.

*State-of-art medical response will treat the rare severe casualties.

*Limits will govern length of practices.

*Injury tracking will cut rates already on decline.

*Coaches will properly train players.

*Every player will undergo medical prescreening.

*Experts will lead safety reform in rulemaking and research.

*Referees and coaches will enforce new rules of experts.

*Players will follow new rules of experts.

Sounds familiar, these steps, a practical recitation of talking points for contemporary “safer football” promoted by the NFL and commissioner Roger Goodell, in face of lawsuit frenzy against the league and sport in general, along with festering disgust in the public.

Except the football rhetoric is 119 years old, from 1894, a packaged response during the game’s initial siege against formidable opposition seeking abolishment. Continue reading

Radio Interview: Matt Chaney

11 Dec

Matt has become a contributor here on the blog and I enjoy the work he has done not only for The Concussion Blog but for everyone.  It’s not a secret that a bit of Matt goes a long way, to say he is opinionated would be a complete understatement.  Matt has very valuable insight into many things; performance enhancing drugs (his book Spiral of Denial is a must read), catastrophic injuries and concussions.  He has lived all of them, making what he has to say valuable.  Just like what I write or opine on, you can take it however you choose but make sure you try to find the salient points.  As many have told me, it’s not the message that is incorrect, rather the way you are conveying the message.

Matt had the opportunity to talk to Dr. Bob Weil out of Chicago regarding all things Matt Chaney.

You can listen HERE.

How To Choose A Sport

11 Dec

Choosing a sport/activity for your child can be difficult – it shouldn’t be initially – as they progress in age and skill level.  Some believe there are factors that come into play when beginning to “specialize”, including injury risk; this is true.  However, our current culture is making the sporting issue way more difficult than it needs to be.

I may not be the best parent, certainly I’m not the first to accomplish this feat, but I do try to be A PARENT and not a friend.  When it comes to sports I let my children choose what they want to play.  My son is now 7, getting ready to get neck-deep in sport and the culture of sports.  He has shown some above average skills in a few sports, and loves one sport; however I will not force him to be exclusive, nor will I be crushed if he chooses not to play.  I will encourage him and my other kids to play MULTIPLE sports and do multiple things, for their entire life.

Alas, there are some families that are weighing the issue of choosing, say football over soccer, or vice versa; tennis or hoop, etc.  Injury risk can be a massive component in this decision so getting all the information is best before choosing, just like making informed decisions.  When discussing concussions and catastrophic injuries the sports we play do matter.

Mom’s Team has a video from Dr. Lyle Micheli, Director, Division of Sports Medicine at Children’s Hospital Boston, which can be found HERE.  It does bring up some good points but Continue reading

Outside the Lines Today

15 Nov

Outside the Lines on ESPN will be featuring Stephania Bell today at 3pm EST to discuss the ongoing issues of head trauma in football.  Another panelist will Matt Chaney, whom has put in great work in the area of injury surveillance and provides the antithesis of “safer-football”.

Set your DVR’s…

Concussion Article Links – MUST READ

9 May

Since the tragic and untimely death of Junior Seau the concussion issue has begun to fester like a three-day old pimple on a 13 year-old’s greasy face.  It is ready to pop and keeping up with all of the pertinent articles and “specials” has been very trying.  In this post I will attempt to link up and highlight as many as I can (surely I will miss many, however Concerned Mom in the comment section will have more).

—–

Lets begin with ESPN and the Outside the Lines week-long look at concussions.  I have found this to be must see, my DVR is a testament to this; using previous stories and bringing in commentators on the subject have provided information and even fireworks.  Yesterday Merril Hoge and Matt Chaney did just that – provide information and create fireworks.  You can find the podcast here (panelists begin about 7:30 mark).

Hoge drew my ire earlier this week with his admonishing of Kurt Warner’s statement of being a father, however yesterday he did have a very valid point about the management of concussions.  I have said is ad nausea here: the elephant in the room is the management of concussions, however Hoge sounded a bit “underconcerned” about the actual injury.  Which is where Chaney had very valid points about the exposure of concussions to the youth.  They are both right in my estimation; the management is the larger issue but we are seeing too many too young people being effected by concussions.  There needs to be work in both areas and remember this is not just a football issue.

We have the duty to protect our kids and if that means flag football for 5-13 year-olds then I am cool with that.  If we find after making such a drastic change that has not been enough then we can take it further if needed.  I feel that a change like this will allow a few things: 1) more time to let the brain develop and thus allowing research to catch up to what we know.  2) employ more medical providers in a position to find, assess and manage concussions (see athletic trainers). And 3) begin a culture shift about the seriousness of concussions, after all this is a brain injury.

As Chaney later told me; Continue reading

Chaney: Football’s Legal Fire

24 Apr

Matt Chaney has written on the issues surrounding football – legally – mainly at the juvenile level.  In this lengthy blog post (found HERE) Chaney talks about;

  • Football Lawsuits Surge Against Schools
  • Court Defenses and Safety Concepts Hardly Shield Juvenile Football
  • ‘Concussion Testing’ Unlikely to Prove Valid in Court as Diagnostic
  • Various Injuries and Issues Pose Legal Bombs for Juvenile Football
  • Should Juveniles Play Tackle Football in America?

As with about everything that Chaney has produced it is WELL WORTH the read and time.  Below is the topic on the “concussion testing”, I have taken the entire chapter with permission from Chaney; Continue reading

In the category of NOT shocking; Catastrophic Brain Injuries Rising in Football

18 Apr

digtriad.com posted a story written by WFMY News 2 about the recent report from the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (NCCSIR);

Monday, researchers at UNC Chapel Hill said catastrophic brain injuries associated with full-contact football appear to be rising, especially among high school students.

They call the increase alarming and said it indicates that more coaches and athletic trainers should change how they teach the fundamental skills of the game.

Until recently, the number of football-related brain injuries with permanent disability in high school had remained in the single digits since 1984.

However, in 2008 and 2009 10 injuries were recorded and in 2011 there were 13 injuries recorded. That’s according to the latest catastrophic football injury research annual report from the UNC-based National Center for Catastrophic Sports Injury Research.

To me it is a double-edged resource; on one hand it is good the “good ol’ boys” of the research world (aka those most listened to) have presented this material.  On the other hand we have published information about this research BEFORE its release recently with the tremendous work of/by Matt Chaney.

The full report from the NCCSIR can be found here, it chronicles the catastrophic injuries from 1977 – 2011.

However with the recent and VERY accurate listings from Chaney there seems to be a difference, which Chaney so eloquently put it in an email to me; Continue reading

Chaney Somewhat Prophetic re:McMahon Post

19 Mar

Matt Chaney, who has been critical of the establishment on various subjects including concussions highlights what Jim McMahon and his group of NFL’ers have been saying in preparations for the law suits aimed at the league.  The following excerpt from a Chaney post on his blog appeared in June of 2011, prior to all the suits (bold my emphasis);

Doctors and medical researchers have long agreed boxing can cause brain damage in athletes and lead to personality disorders and outbursts, through repetitive impacts both concussive and sub-concussive.

A 1973 study on postmortem evidence of 15 ex-pro boxers who suffered “punch-drunk syndrome” documented their “violent behavior and rage reaction” through interviews of relatives. Several of the boxers died in psychiatric wards.

Decades earlier, boxers who became demented and deranged were known as “slug nutty,” according to a 1928 report by Dr. Harrison Martland.

Meanwhile, yet today, the NFL and loyalist experts loathe admitting that tackle football even causes long-term impairment, much less off-field violence by players and chaos for families. Continue reading

How Can This Be?

13 Mar

A group of researchers including R. Dawn Comstock released data, published earlier this year, regarding concussions what was initially found is not surprising, or shouldn’t be;

Of 14,635 high-school sports injuries reported during the 2008-10 school years, 1,936 (13.2 percent) were concussions, according to an epidemiological study published in January in the American Journal of Sports Medicine. This was nearly twice the rate reported in earlier studies of high-school athletes.

Part of the reason the increase exists is because of the inclusion of boys hockey and lacrosse, however taking that away there would be a significant increase otherwise.  This too can be attributed to the increased awareness and better assessment of concussions.  It is of my opinion that we are just now on the verge of finding the “true” rate of concussions, for many years it has been under-reported due to the lack of understanding/awareness (also an issue with general and serious injury tracking as well, see Matt Chaney)

What makes this research “eye-opening” is what the researches found about recovery; Continue reading

Chaney’s 2011 Findings

13 Feb

Matt Chaney is a writer, editor, teacher and restaurant worker living in Missouri, USA. His 2001 graduate thesis study for an MA degree at the University of Central Missouri was qualitative media analysis of 466 football reports, historical print coverage of anabolic steroids and HGH in American football, largely based on electronic search among thousands of news texts from the 1970s through 1999. For more information, including contact numbers and his 2009 book, Spiral of Denial: Muscle Doping in American Football, visit the homepage at www.fourwallspublishing.com.

Matt Chaney has taken it upon himself to find information about catastrophic injuries associated with American football.  Chaney is a former college football player that has become concerned with the relative “under-reporting” of catastrophic injuries in football.  This official task has primarily been up to the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research, University of North Carolina.  The NCCSIR provides the catastrophic injury rates for sports, painting a picture of “worst case” injuries.

What Chaney has discovered in his electronic survey for 2011 is 220 cases of football catastrophic injuries, 194 survivor cases and 26 deaths.  For comparison in 2009 and 2010 the NCCSIR reported 44 and 24 survivor cases, where Chaney found 165 survivor cases for those two years.

Chaney does not hold his information as medical record, rather an electronic search that fit the guidelines of catastrophic injury surveillance.  Here is an excerpt from his post (for an annotated case by case and the full article click HERE);

Last fall in Oklahoma, athletic trainer Dan Dodson saw the horrific side of tackle football become manifest.

Grave injury struck down three teen players under Dodson’s watch, leaving one dead, from one team.

In a span of barely three weeks, Edmond North High School became site of perhaps the worst cluster of acute casualties in known history of American football. Continue reading

Injury Statistics

5 Jan

Statistics are seemingly becoming a major part of all of our lives; from your favorite baseball players batting average, to the graduation rate of the school system, to your fantasy football team, to the injury rate of particular activities.  Being an athletic trainer the later is important, not only does it paint a picture of “expected” injuries we should be on top of, it also provides information for us to use in terms of making solid decisions about return to sport.

If a player sustains an injury that occurs a high percentage of the time in the sport, then when returning there are different things we can do, in terms of preventative measures, to possibly avoid a re-injury.  Along with that, if a player sustains a “freak injury” and obtains complete recovery statistics can tell us if playing again is a good idea at all.

This is why it is important to have all the available information be correct and up to date; more and more decisions not only from athletic trainers but parents about playing are made from such injury statistics.  One of the “gold standards” of injury surveillance for athletic training is Continue reading

Chaney Tracks Catastrophic Injuries

22 Dec

If you have read the blog much you will find a fair amount of information and commentary from Matt Chaney regarding his position on head/brain injury.  One thing that Matt does well, from his journalistic background, is document the many cases of catastrophic injury related to football in America.

Chaney is not the only one who does this, he just appears to be more transparent about it than the national foundation for such tracking, the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research (NCCSI).  In his most recent post on his blog, Chaney gives us the list he has compiled for 2011, both by the NCCSI criteria and his extended criteria (which deserves credit).

The rate of catastrophic injuries in American football could be a record in 2011, with more than 70 survivor cases of conditions such as brain hemorrhage and spinal fracture, according to an intensive electronic survey by this reporter.

See the complete annotated list of cases below, with juveniles comprising the large majority of victims.

The findings belie talk of “culture change” by football officials, their popular claim of “safer” football in America, and raise question whether catastrophic injuries of the inherently brutal sport are significantly under-reported in record-keeping of the present and past.

Last year the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research (NCCSI) logged only 24 survivor cases—barely half the 2010 cases still available online, including players with brain bleeds and spinal paralysis missed in the report.

Now stronger accounting is assured for 2011, standing on results of my daily searching of Google banks that’s garnered a solid 70 survivor cases for verification as catastrophic football injuries, defined by the NCCSI as affecting the brain, skull, spinal cord and/or vertebral column.

My cases include the following: Continue reading

No Collision Sports For Kids Under 14

13 Sep

On this blog we have been presenting information that has led to me and others saying that intentional contact to the head of adolescents is not good for long-term health.  What has not happened until recently is a “big name” in the research/medical world suggest that collision sports are inherently dangerous enough to warrant us to re-think our practices.

At the end of August the American Academy of Pediatrics announced that kids should not be boxing for the risk associated with concussions (number one injury in boxing).  That was quickly shunned by the boxing world and even the prominent Dr. Robert Cantu said there could be a social impact that should be realized.  Dr. Cantu stopped short of admonishing the decision as well as supporting the decision (in the related article).  However, the announcement was not unexpected if you have been paying attention, more as more problems are being found with brain injury.

I have clearly stated that I will have no problem with my children playing collision sports, only when they are older and in high school.  I want nothing more than for my sons to play football (if they choose), but at what risk?  Sure “back in the day” kids were getting their “clocks cleaned”, then subsequently grabbing some “smelling salts” and returning to the game, heck I was one of those.  As they and me have aged things have changed, not just in research, Continue reading

Great Resource About Concussion Myths

5 Aug

Matt Chaney has been busy this summer with work, but he found some time to forward a bunch of links regarding concussions.  There were a lot dealing with the state laws and the mandates now in place across the sporting landscape, all with very valid opinions.  Some dealt with his area of expertise, steroid and PED detection.  However there was one that I must share with you; a link to a NASP Communique (National Association of School Psychologists)

The link was very resourceful but the gem was the attached .pdf that dealt with the myths we commonly hear with concussions.  Due to the rudeness of ripping off all the information below you will see the myths they took on, and for the actual facts please click on the .pdf link above;

Identifying Concussions

  • Professionals agree on the definition of a concussion.
  • A more accurate term for concussion is a head injury rather than a brain injury. Continue reading

Matt Chaney’s Take on NFL “Testing”

4 Aug

This blog is devoted to concussions, but there are issues out there that most want to know about.  One being the steroid/HGH issue in sports, heck it was all the talk today prior to the CBA being ratified.  Matt Chaney might be one of the best sources on the subject you have never heard of.  Matt has his own blog but has been busy working at a location where he is unable to blog as often as he likes.  Today he sent over a post that will be on his blog soon but for now we will post it here.  Matt plans on revising some of this with further sourcing and information, but if you are interested in the NFL drug testing issue he is a great source of information.

NFLPA Must Resist Unvalidated Blood Testing for HGH

I. Introduction

I am Matt Chaney, a Missouri-based writer with over 20,000 hours of study and writing in the issue of anabolic substances in American football. My expertise is rooted in my experience of reluctantly using synthetic testosterone as an NCAA football player in 1982, and I authored the 2009 book Spiral of Denial: Muscle Doping in American Football.

My persuasion here is to detail primary reasons why the National Football League Players Association must resist blood testing that remains unavailable for independent scientific review. Never have I advocated the use of muscle drugs in any sport, but I am strictly opposed to faulty detection methods—such as the invalid, unreliable urinalysis that American football has employed since 1986.

Testing for anabolic steroids—established by the International Olympic Committee in 1976 and adopted by National Football League commissioner Continue reading

US H.R. 469

11 Jul

We have logged 21 different states putting forth legislation for head injuries in sports.  The first one was in Washington with the passage of the Zachary Leystedt Law in 2009.  Now the United States House of Representatives has put forth an effort to create a “minimum” standard for each state to follow.  H.R. 469 was introduced in January of this year and has not garnered a lot of press, here are the highlights;

  • School Sponsored Athletic Activity (all schools)
  • Healthcare Professional includes athletic trainers
  • A very well constructed definition of concussion
  • Informed consent to parents, athletes, coaches, etc.
  • Required assistance for students to return to academics
  • Required posting of information regarding concussions in the schools
  • Out a minimum of 24 hours and cannot RTP without written clearance from healthcare provider
  • A report out to the Secretary of Education at end of year

We have reached out for comment from various sources and here is what some have to say. Continue reading

Matt Chaney: Football-Meida Complex

10 Jun

Matt Chaney is a former football player and even self-described “juicer” during his time in the game.  He used his first hand experience to write a book about steroids in football “Spiral of Denial: Muscle Doping in American Football“, and now has taken his focus on the concussion issue.  Chaney is what I like to call a “pseudo contributor” to The Concussion Blog, he has helped with finding many articles and topics on this blog.  Behind the scenes Matt is one of the most profound people to spark conversation, and has very “real” views on this issue; not to mention that Chaney is a very good journalist.  (This post is part 2 of an excerpt preview for a pending analysis on Chaney’s Blog, ‘Brain Trauma Stalks Football Players, Dictates Impact Game Reform,’ which will include independent experts’ recommendations for constructive steps imperative to the sport’s survival at public schools and colleges.)

A couple of months after Matt Chaney took a hard look at Neuropsychological Testing he now looks at how the media has been handling the issue.  Matt holds nothing back as his analysis and opinion make people take a look at how things are being done.  Chaney has even given The Concussion Blog some of his feedback and we listen to every point.  Some of his points are clear but yet seem to be overlooked;

Despite the contemporary campaign of “concussion awareness” and “culture change” for tackle football, as game officials and media promote, America essentially remains insensitive to brain disorder in victims and especially athletes.

“Generally speaking, mankind does not empathize with brain diseases as well as with physical ailments; there is this negative response, culturally, for diseases of the brain,” said Dr. Bennet Omalu, the forensic pathologist who first discovered cerebral damage in an American football player, deceased NFL lineman Mike Webster.

“If you talk about having mental disorder, psychological disease, people wouldn’t empathize with you,” Omalu said. “Rather, they would Continue reading

Matt Chaney: Concussion Testing

25 Apr

Matt Chaney is a former football player and even self-described “juicer” during his time in the game.  He used his first hand experience to write a book about steroids in football “Spiral of Denial: Muscle Doping in American Football“, and now has taken his focus on the concussion issue.  Chaney is what I like to call a “pseudo contributor” to The Concussion Blog, he has helped with finding many articles and topics on this blog.  Behind the scenes Matt is one of the most profound people to spark conversation, and has very “real” views on this issue; not to mention that Chaney is a very good journalist.  (This post is an excerpt preview for a pending analysis on Chaney’s Blog, ‘Brain Trauma Stalks Football Players, Dictates Impact Game Reform,’ which will include independent experts’ recommendations for constructive steps imperative to the sport’s survival at public schools and colleges.)

In his most recent post on his blog concerning concussions, Chaney takes a run at neruopsychological (NP) testing and the issues that he and others, including myself, have had with them.  As I told Matt and still believe; NP testing serves a vital role in the spectrum of concussions such as assessment, management and even some awareness regarding the injury.  The issue that I personally have is one of reliability and the “standard of practice”, each NP test can be done and analyzed differently.  How these tests are used is the biggest issue and Chaney says it in his style;

Current purveyors of the theory, led by Chris Nowinski and Dr. Robert Cantu of the Sports Legacy Institute, and NFL commissioner Roger Goodell—who funds the Nowinski nonprofit with $1 million—propose action reminiscent of the plug-in electric football game, with plastic players bumping across the vibrating surface, hooking at shoulders in ring dances.

And that’s only the beginning of hocus-pocus remedy for rampant head injury in American football.

While mysteries are daunting for the problem, like positive diagnosis of concussion, mere clinical intuition guides the varied protocols of diagnosis and judgment for when players are fit to compete again. No random clinical trial of legitimacy has been attempted.

“It is scary,” said Dr. Lester Mayers, concussion researcher of Pace University athletics, who joins experts like Dr. Bennet Omalu in sounding alarm over football’s touting concussion testing, which is parroted by media.

These critics warn football conducts dangerous “concussion management” based on incomplete research for assessing symptoms, and many brain-injured players are prematurely returning to contact, all ages, typically within days.

Chaney takes clear aim at ImPACT during the article; Continue reading

Nowinski Now Trending Toward Omalu on Rest

4 Mar

We have seen that Omalu and others in the field have been saying one or two weeks may be not enough to “calm down” the effects of a concussion.  What was pointed out by our friend Matt Chaney is that some of the “heavy hitters” had not followed the same plan.  That was until now, as Chris Nowinski of the Sports Legacy Institute said this during an interview on the Dennis & Callahan show of WEEI;

Nowinski said it makes no sense to rush an athlete back after a concussion. “Science is starting to show that you almost can’t be too sensitive to this issue,” he said. “While guys are coming back from concussions in a few days or maybe a week or two, some studies are showing that the changes in the brain — that really expose the brain to another hit will cause more damage, this window of vulnerability — is really a lot longer than a few days. And some people might be 30 days or even 60 days. The reality is, maybe if you don’t want to make a concussion worse, no one should be back within a month. The science is starting to point in that direction, but it will be a while before we can confirm that.”

This is a very positive trend, one that I have been hammering into the coaches and Continue reading

Laws and Mandates Not Enough

25 Feb

According to Matt Chaney, a pseudo-contributor to The Concussion Blog and an individual who’s thoughts I respect, the bills and mandates being voted upon are not enough;

What is the National Football League up to?

Who do NFL yaks think they are, pushing the 50 states and District of Columbia to burden schools with fresh bureaucracy and expense by passing youth concussion laws that offer minimal protection while raising legal stakes?

A phat-assed, billion-dollar entertainment conglomerate dictates need for vital, cash-strapped public education?

NFL yaks in their glass tower still don’t get everyday America. They should grasp current news besides droning sports trivia, like several states’ succumbing to bankruptcy while all scrape to fund education, police and fire protection, water and sewer, and roads and bridges, among our necessities suffering shortfall.

Matt has a passion that is very palpable not only for the safety of kids Continue reading

Brain Expert Omalu Wants Longer Rest for Concussed Football Players

28 Jan

Scott Fujita

A occassional contributor to The Concussion Blog, Matt Chaney, a journalist, editor, teacher and publisher, also has a blog.  However, Chaney has published a book titled Spiral of Denial; Muscle Doping in American Football, so he is not new to finding and presenting good information.

Sideline concussed juveniles for three months, says breakthrough neuropath NP testing, lacks validation and might be harmful, critics charge NFL players rebuke ‘safer’ football through their ‘behavior modification’

By Matt Chaney
Posted Friday, January 28, 2011

So-called concussion awareness is said to be sweeping American football, and Scott Fujita, veteran NFL linebacker, agrees to a point.

Yes, Fujita confirms, even hard dudes like him have sobered in their perspective. Head injuries are no longer considered trivial in football but as serious business, and NFL players get it, especially
Fujita, nearing 32 years old at arguably the game’s most violent position for Cleveland.

In his mind the most menacing guys don’t appear so tough anymore, just more human, fragile—even as he targets one to smash on the field.

“I gotta be honest, I think about that every time I go in now to tackle somebody,” Fujita, 6-foot-5 and 250 pounds, said this week in a phone interview. “I’m concerned for my own safety as well as
theirs. I’m a married guy, I’ve got two young kids, and I see a lot more the big picture than I ever did before.”

But has anything changed about danger in tackle football, the game that kills and maims? Is so-called safer play really taking over?

Fujita, member of the players union executive committee, doesn’t equivocate in answering, typical of his trademark frankness. “Do I feel safer with the emphasis on the rules and all that kind of stuff?
No, that doesn’t make me feel safer,” Fujita said. “Do I think the emphasis makes the game safer? No. Overall, I don’t, know.”

READ MORE HERE

The entire article is VERY comprehensive and has some intriguing interviews, below are more excerpts; Continue reading

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