We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Physics. Athletes nowadays are ENORMOUS, work out more, weigh far more than even a generation ago. This means that injuries are far worse as one gets walloped or charged into with far more force. Think of the difference between being run into by a 140 pound football player and a 300 pound one....Think of what we know about car accidents and mass...I could also theorize ponderously about a culture (and a lot of money involved) obsessed with winning at all costs. No more amateurs or good sports these days. Also, think of the backgrounds of players. The ones who do well are sometimes literally killers. Professional sports are the gladiatorial combat of our day, the bread and circuses that help keep the masses quiet and stuffing their faces on their couches instead of making trouble being political or doing anything in their spare time, so it has to be riveting. Serious damage to players attracts a certain kind of spectator. Who me, cynical?
(I'm all for people being athletes, but I believe in lifelong amateur sports. It bores me watching other people exercise--I'd rather be moving myself. I do wonder sometimes how I survived without concussion, tho, all those years riding horseback and not always bothering with a helmet (hot, uncomfortable) and numerous falls from skittish horses or daredevil stunts in my salad days...)
A big part of that agression you see in sports is due to the suppression of agression for males, the removal of the need to hunt and gather anymore (big ag provides for all, except a few who still hunt when allowed), and the passive agression of social medi.
I dont fb, twit, or instagram; but have been amusef by stories for several years of people who hash family business on web-blogs til the anger becomesr too much to contain.
What are the rates of head injuries in Rugby and Australian rules football v.s. American football?
Be a man, take off the pad.
William O. B'Livion
I played rugby in college and for club teams for a few years after. Whenever a former high school football player joined the team, we had to spend extra time teaching how to tackle without killing himself.
One wonders if football helmet design has essentially reached a dead end? Sure, there may be marginal improvements but wouldn't a truly revolutionary design have happened by now, given the attention that has been focused on head safety?
Way back in the mid 1970s, when I was in college, weight training for football players was in its infancy. At the time I wondered aloud if physically stronger, faster players (and the resulting harder collisions) would lead to more concussions. No one I asked would speculate.
Fast fwd to today and I still can't help but wonder how much of a factor it is?
I would think that a return to single platoon football with baseball style limited substitution would result in a decrease in head injuries. Single platoon football would require a different style of player than the behemoths that are on the field today. I am thinking reduced strength induced by fatigue from players continually being on the field as the game progressed would reduce head injuries as well.
One wonders if football helmet design has essentially reached a dead end?
There are (purportedly) designs for helmets and pads that would provide more protection, but they are soft shelled rather than hard, and don't have that (move your hands together as you say this" "Crack" that the contemporary pads to.
Coaches like that crack. They're addicted to that crack.
William O. B'Livion
In gladiatorial combat, there must be injuries. It;s part of what they are paid for.
C-O-A-C-H-I-N-G! Just stop FB coaches at all levels from teaching techniques that rely upon the helmeted head as a weapon or a tool to be used for tackling/intimidation.
When I played, any use of a helmeted head was almost always penalized as "spearing". Instead we were taught to tackle with our shoulders, as rugby players do and when someone was down, any additional hitting of the downed player was forbidden as unnecessary roughness and also penalized.
Now just watch any pro football game and those rules have gone out the window, in favor of legalized, gladiatorial-type viciousness. It really doesn't add to the game, aside from sating bloodlust!
Just go back to the old rules and ban any coach who teaches and encourages players to do otherwise.
I think it is possible that the real solution to this problem is counter intuitive. Strip all protections from the players. No helmets, shoulder pads, nothing. Just tee shirts and shorts kind of like rugby or soccer. The helmet is a weapon and you realize it as soon as you put it on. The rest of the padding and protection simply allows you to carelessly use as much force as you can muster because you probably won't get hurt in a collision.