High School Sports, Head Impact Rates, and Gender Differences
Soccer, Basketball, Lacrosse, Field Hockey…when kids are young it’s all just fun and games but by high school those same sports can become quite serious and even dangerous. Recent research published in the Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine reported on the rates of head impact within these four varsity high school sports, and the comparison of that frequency between male and female team players.
This information is particularly important for parents to know and understand because of the dangerous and long-term repercussions that repetitive head impact can have on adolescents. Even without the diagnosis of concussion, kids who receive repeated head impact can suffer from cognitive impairment and other forms of neurological damage.
The researchers concluded that of those four sports, soccer players had the highest incidence of head impact, with basketball coming in second, and male players sustained more head impact across the sports than females did. Scientists ultimately hope that understanding these facts will help professionals “create sport-specific targets for reducing head impact exposure.”
Terissa Michele Miller, MS Psy
Check out the original research: