Memphis Doctor Urges Caution With Youth Football
(Memphis) It’s safe to say football in the Mid-South is extremely popular.
“I grew up watching football,” said Dr. Manoj Jain, who’s been researching the sport, “I’m from New England, so I’m a New England patriots fan.
However, Dr. Jain is concerned about the permanent damage football can have on teenagers.
His concern grew after attending a middle school football game with his 12-year-old son, “Contact sports like football can have short-term and long-term injury to the brain, especially among developing brains, like kids in middle school and high school.”
The NFL is already making changes to protect players from concussions.
Dr. Jain is urging parents to have conversations with coaches, to find ways to reduce the high number of impacts players receive throughout a season.
He suggests there be no contact on two-thirds of practices.
He says studies show it will reduce head impacts by over half.
“It’s hard to change a culture. You know, we love football and I love football as well, but we’ve got to look at the long-term implications of head injury,” he said.
Dr. Jain is not against teenagers playing football.
He says the likelihood of going pro is slim.
He suggests trying out flag football instead.