Coaches At All Levels of Sports Depend on Athletic Trainers to Guide Athletes Back to the Game After A Concussion

When an athlete suffers an injury to the head while playing a game, you can find Athletic Trainers guiding coaches that the athlete stays on the sideline instead of going back to the game because it is what must be done for head injuries.  

The idea of studying professional athlete Patrick Mahome’s injury that caused him to be unable to return to the game does not seem right. However, I do agree with National Athletic Trainers’ Association President Tory Lindley that it is a teachable moment in concussion learning.

As a high school athlete, you have the same chance to be held out from a game as a professional athlete after a head injury. 

It is the result of two things: all fifty states enacting youth concussion laws and the presence of Athletic Trainers on your sidelines.

When an athlete suffers an injury to the head along with observed or reported symptoms there is no debate about what to do next. Simply hold the athlete out of the game until they are cleared by a health care provider to come back.

I just leave that to (Athletic Trainer) Rick (Burkholder) and the docs because of the protocol it’s a no brainer for the coaching staff, you don’t have to think about it..

Coach Andy Reid via NFL.com

The “woozy” appearance of the athlete on the field after the head injury likely triggered the Athletic Trainers to make the call to hold the athlete out.  It is the standard of care.

The standard of care is important. Without the Athletic Trainer, there is no one there to recognize the injury and begin the steps of what must be done after the injury happens.

When Athletic Trainers are there, it is the “no brainer” that Coach Reid referrers to.

The decision was made hold the athlete out, there is a recognized set of steps to follow after the injury happens, and the Athletic Trainers let the coach know when it is safe for the athlete to go back.

The teachable moment, holding out the athlete after a head injury is what must be done. It is the standard of care for head injuries.  No matter what of what level of sport you are playing at.

Read the full story about Patrick Mahome’s injury at NFL.com.
You can find out more about what must be done for youth concussions from wiaawi.org.

Copyright 2021 Lindsey Rozinski

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