Project Title: The Health Issue
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By: darq3f

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How long have you been head football trainer at Pflugerville High School?

Seven years.


Have concussions been a problem with the team in recent years?

No, not more than usual.


After receiving a concussion, is there a set time that a player has to sit out before he can return to action?

For minor concussions, it’s 15 minutes. If the symptoms do not go away in that time, then the player is out pending observation from a doctor or myself.


Are there any rehabilitation procedures for players out with a concussion?

If they are out with a concussion, they are to do no activity. Once that period of time is up, they are to progress to stationary biking, jogging, running, practicing and then eventually playing.


Who has the final say over a player returning from injury?

If he’s under a doctor’s care, the doctor’s recommendation goes to us. We ultimately make the decision to put the player back on the field.

Do the newer helmets help prevent more concussions than the older ones?

I haven’t seen any reduction because a lot of other factors still have to be taken into account, such as the level of play versus the muscular strength and the experience of the player. Plus every hit is different. Players get hit from all angles, so you really can’t say that the newer helmets are better than the older helmets. Another thing is every two years the helmet goes for re-certification.


What are some ways players can prevent getting a concussion?

Proper form, proper technique and fundamentals. 


How many helmets do you lose on average a year? 

Up to 20, maybe 30, helmets a year because they fail the test, but it’s to ensure player safety on the field.


Is there anything you would like to see either the district or the state do to help improve player safety?

I think they do enough right now to encourage coaches to teach fundamentals; I’d say they do a pretty good job.


—Compiled by Clark Mills


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