A concussion prevention program that teaches young football players safer ways to block and tackle was tied to about a one-third lower risk of head injury, according to a new study. And, in those players who did sustain a concussion, recovery was 27 percent faster for those involved in the program, the researchers found. Dubbed the “Heads Up” program, players are taught to lead with their shoulders when tackling an opponent rather than hitting the ball carrier head first.
The study looked at more than 2,500 high school football players from 24 schools in the Greenville, S.C. area over the course of the 2015 season. Over the course of the season, there were 117 concussions among the players. Players on the teams using the Heads Up program sustained about one-third fewer concussions, the study found. Players in the Heads Up group were able to return to play in 11 days while those in the non-Heads Up group were out of action for 15 days, the findings showed.