Does Soccer Cause Brain Damage? May 15, 2007Posted by edukfun in brain injury, children, education, exercise, general, parenting, school, sports.
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Parents may rightly worry that soccer, a sport which requires players to head the ball, may cause or contribute to brain damage. There was at least one TV courtroom drama with an episode based on the idea that soccer is inherently brain damaging.
Parents can breathe a sigh of relief.
A new study that examined the effects of boxing and soccer on brain damage conclude that soccer is safe. Of course a single study doesn’t solidly prove anything, so parents must still use their own careful judgement. Heading in soccer may not cause brain damage, but there are other risks of injury to consider. Generally, though, players won’t be in any more danger than playing some other competitive contact sport.
Boxing, both professional and amateur, is not so lucky. The study found an increase in brain chemicals tied to damage in fighters. So while your child may be safe on the field, he may still get brain damage in the stands when the fan riot breaks out.