New athletic rules

School athletic programs and other youth athletics in Michigan are now under strict new rules regarding concussions. The new state law requires youth athletes to be removed from games if a concussion is even suspected, and they cannot return until there is clearance from a health professional. The new rules follow recent news about the increasing number of concussions in sports such as football and soccer. The rules, which formally took effect in June, cover all youth sports. Michigan is the 39th state to impose such requirements regarding concussions. The statute also requires that adults involved in a youth athletic activity receive training on sports concussions, and that youth athletes and their parents or guardians receive educational information on sports concussions, so that everyone involved in the sports knows what signs and symptoms to look for, according to Lauren Rowen of the Michigan Department of Community Health. A concussion is a brain injury caused by a blow, bump or jolt to the head. It can occur in any sport or recreational activity. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), U.S. emergency departments treat more than 173-thousand sports and recreation-related concussions among children and adolescents a year. The highest incidents reportedly occur in boys football and girls soccer. More information from the CDC can be found online at

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