By Ken Reed
Hockey Championship Ends in Tie for Safety Reasons
This year’s state high school championship hockey game in Ohio was declared a 1-1 tie after seven overtime periods for safety reasons.
The decision was made after conversations between Dan Ross, commissioner of the Ohio High School Athletic Association and the athletic directors from both schools. Ohio high school rules don’t allow for shootouts which are used to end prolonged ties at many levels of hockey, including the Olympics and NHL.
“During the conversations, the safety and health of the kids rose to the top, and that made the decision very easy,” Ross said.
At the time of the decision, the fans and players wanted to keep playing but some feelings mellowed after a couple days of reflection.
“I was upset they stopped the game,” said David Marsh, a participant in the game. “I wanted to keep playing. That changed today. I realized I’m a state champion.”
The administrators made the right call. Now they need to work on putting a shootout in the state rules in order to prevent a similar situation in the future.
Companies Trying to Develop Impact Sensors for Brain Safety
Reebok and other companies are working hard to develop impact sensors that could eventually be commonplace in collision sports like hockey, football and soccer. The sensors measure the force of an impact to the head.
The question is do they do any good?
Experts say the new tools are imprecise and insufficient by themselves to indicate a concussion. The other major problem with relying too much on these sensors is the fact that an impact that leaves one player concussed may have little effect on another. Also, younger athletes can respond to hits in a different way than adults because their necks aren’t as strong. The whiplash effect of a hit that would be relatively mild for an adult can result in a concussion for a 13-year-old.
“There is not a known threshold for concussions,” said Kevin Guskiewicz, an exercise and sports science professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, who studies concussions. “Parents are going to buy a product that’s potentially going to protect their kid, but it can be very misleading. The science hasn’t evolved to the point where we can interpret these metrics.”
That’s the big issue here. Corporate marketers will sell these devices as making collision sports safer. It’s similar to what some football helmet manufacturers have done in the past with safety claims for their helmets. Those claims have been threatened by lawsuits and the testimonies of medical experts.
Parents and coaches beware. First of all, these sensors don’t prevent the collisions that lead to concussions; and second, the readings may give players, coaches and parents a false sense of confidence.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
Sports Forum Podcast
Episode #10 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: An Issues Discussion With Paul Dolan – Dolan is the Cleveland Indians Owner and CEO. He discusses the use of Native American names and logos by sports teams and the decisions to drop the Chief Wahoo logo and the upcoming change to the team name. Other baseball topics include health and safety, possible MLB rule changes and youth participation in the sport.
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Episode #9 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Talking Sports Issues With Ralph Nader – Nader is a consumer advocate and was named one of the “100 Most Influential Americans of the 20th Century” by Time magazine. He is the founder of League of Fans.
Episode #8 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: How Can We Save College Sports From Overcommercialization and Professionalization? – The guest is Dr. David Ridpath, a sports business professor and past president of the Drake Group
Episode #7 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Brain Trauma and CTE Risk in Sports With Dr. Ann McKee – Dr. McKee works in the field of neuropathology and has demonstrated that “mild” repetitive head trauma can provoke chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a devastating neurodegenerative disease.
Episode #6 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: The Need for Quality Physical Education in Our Schools is Greater Than Ever – The guest is Clayton Ellis, one of our nation’s leading advocates for getting our young people to be more physically active.
Episode #5 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Youth Sports with Positive Coaching Alliance Founder Jim Thompson – Thompson started Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) in 1998 to help create a movement to transform the culture of youth sports from “win-at-all-costs” to a positive, character-building experience.
Media"How We Can Save Sports" author Ken Reed appears on Fox & Friends to explain how there's "too much adult in youth sports."
Ken Reed appears on Mornings with Gail from KFKA Radio in Colorado to discuss bad parenting in youth athletics.
“Should College Athletes Be Paid?” Ken Reed on The Morning Show from Wisconsin Public Radio
Ken Reed appears on KGNU Community Radio in Colorado (at 02:30) to discuss equality in sports and Title IX.
Ken Reed appears on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour (at 38:35) to discuss his book The Sports Reformers: Working to Make the World of Sports a Better Place, and to talk about some current sports issues.
Sports & Torts – Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans – at the American Museum of Tort Law
League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.
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