Tag Archives: rules

Pop Warner Announces It Will Eliminate Kickoffs

Pop Warner announced yesterday it will eliminate kickoffs.

The ban, which will take effect in the three youngest divisions when the season begins this fall, “is aimed at significantly reducing the amount of full-speed, head-on impact in games.”

Instead of kicking it off, the ball will be placed at the 35-yard line to start each half and after each score in all Tiny Mite (5-to-7-years-old), Mitey Mite (7-9) and Junior Pee Wee (8-10) games.

Following the season, Pop Warner will review the results of the move as it considers implementation in older divisions.

“We are constantly working to make the game safer and better for our young athletes, and we think this move is an important step in that direction,” said Jon Butler, Pop Warner’s executive director.

“Eliminating kickoffs at this level adds another layer of safety without changing the nature of this great game. We are excited to look at the results at the end of the year as we explore additional measures.”

Pop Warner announced a further reduction of contact time in practice across all divisions. After limiting player contact to only 33 percent of practice time in 2012, Pop Warner will now restrict contact to approximately 25 percent of practice time, beginning this season.

The moves are just the latest in Pop Warner changes aimed at “enhanced player safety.” Other initiatives:

  • “In 2010, Pop Warner implemented the first youth sport concussion policy requiring that any participant removed from practice, play or competition due to a head injury or suspected concussion may not return to Pop Warner activities evaluated – and receives written clearance – by a licensed medical professional trained in the evaluation and management of concussions, based on Washington State’s 2009 Lystedt Law.
  • To ensure that Pop Warner stays on the forefront of new health and safety issues and any medical developments that may affect our young athletes, Pop Warner formed an independent Medical Advisory Committee in 2010. Led by neurosurgeons, researchers and sports medicine professionals, the committee is focused on the prevention, proper identification and treatment of concussions; hydration awareness and proper nutrition guidelines; and general health and safety issues.
  • Pop Warner coaches are trained in USA Football’s Heads Up Football program, where safer approaches to tackling and blocking are emphasized. As a result, Pop Warner programs had 87% fewer overall injuries and 76% fewer concussions in practice than non-Pop Warner programs that do not do Heads Up Football training in 2014, according to a study by Datalys. Pop Warner programs also had 24% fewer overall injuries than non-Pop Warner programs that did do Heads Up Football training.
  • In 2012, Pop Warner banned full-speed head-on, blocking or tackling drills in which the players line up more than 3 yards apart.”
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GHSAA Limits Contact in Football in Nod to Concussion Prevention

The Georgia High School Athletic Association’s executive committee has unanimously approved rules that will limit full contact on the football field to 45 minutes per day and 135 minutes per week in the spring and preseason.

The limits are even more restrictive during during the regular season and post-season, where teams may only participate in full contact for 30 minutes per day and 90 minutes per week. In addition, they cannot have full contact over three consecutive days.

Each school must also keep a detailed daily practice plan. GHSAA members that violate the rules will be fined the first time, and banned from postseason play if it happens again.

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Is there a Correlation Between No-Huddle Offenses and Concussions?

Does the increasing use of no-huddle offenses in college football exacerbate the concussion problem?

It depends on who you talk to.KENTUCKY2010 066 (3)

University of Arkansas Head Football Coach Bret Bielema used the news story about San Francisco 49er Chris Borland’s retirement last week to suggest hurry-up, no-huddle offenses lead to an increased injury risk to players who couldn’t substitute off the field, leading to more plays.

Bielema said he read “a study that said players in the no-huddle, hurry-up offense play the equivalent of five more games than those that don’t. That’s an incredible number.

Others aren’t so sure of Bielema’s theory.

University of Arizona Head Athletic Trainer Randy Cohen believes some coaches may be pushing to slow down hurry-up offenses for a “competitive advantage.”

Cohen, who chairs the college committee of the National Athletic Trainers’ Association, added: “Don’t say it’s a safety issue because right now we don’t have any data about this. None.”

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