The League

Mackie Shilstone
Sports Performance Manager, MA, MBA

Mackie Shilstone

Executive Director, The Fitness Principle with Mackie Shilstone at East Jefferson General Hospital

Study Film, Damage Brain?


As more and more athletes participate in contact/collision sports, such as football, the number of concussions will continue to grow. And without a comprehensive prevention program, and an effective treatment and follow-up care plan they may rank as one of the top career ending injuries athletes can face. Recently, I read an article discussing a potential rule change for high school football players that discussed preventing a concussed athlete from returning to the same game in which the injury occurred.

What stuck me as interesting was the fact that as part of a follow-up plan, it was suggested that their might also be a cognitive impairment issue, if the young athlete continued performing school work/ classroom work, since it might tax the brain that was recovering from the concussion in its initial stages of recovery.

Again, as I remember, this information was conjecture ,but it does make me wonder for the NFL player who sustains a concussion what would be the effect of continuing to attend film study and team meetings, where complicated plays and formation were not only discussed but also where high level thinking, if that does exist in such sessions, was involved.

What effect therefore does taxing the concussed brain have on the safe, speedy return to the game by the injured player? At rest, the brain is the biggest user of glucose (fuel) in the body. Are we short changing our fuel supply by taxing the concussed brain both on and off the field? As they say, it truly is food for thought in the NFL.

By Mackie Shilstone  |  June 10, 2009; 9:47 AM ET  | Category:  Concussions , Medical Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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