InjureFree Blog

Concussion Prevention - Changing the Culture of Youth Sports

As a young athlete, getting injured can feel disappointing as you watch your teammates progress, enjoy the game and take home wins! It’s tough to feel as though you’re missing out on the camaraderie and team spirit. Of course, as a coach, the goal is not to scare athletes about the dangers of getting injured or prematurely returning to play after an injury but rather to provide positive mentorship and guidance and empower the athlete to listen to their body. 

We have all played through an injury to appear tough, maybe to please our coach or be the team hero, but the truth is that as informed adults, we now know the realities of playing through an injury and the potential risks that come with it. By speaking about and educating athletes on injuries such as concussions, coaches are simultaneously normalizing and encouraging self-injury reporting, which can prevent future injuries from occurring. 

Volunteer coaches and athletic trainers act as teachers, leaders and mentors. Mentors are extremely positive and impactful in a young person’s life as they help strengthen personal growth and development! We’ve all had positive and negative examples of mentorship from a coach in the past - coaches who prioritize winning over safety and others who empower, educate and prioritize the safety of their athletes. Our word holds great weight as we guide and support our athletes as adults. What a gift we can impart to young people in sport. By simply celebrating communication, self-awareness and education, coaches are setting their athletes up for success both on and off the field!

CDC Heads Up provides an informative and easy-to-follow fact sheet for coaches to learn more about concussions and simultaneously support their athletes. Click here to read on!


  2. Can we change the culture of youth sports?. Safe Kids Worldwide. (n.d.). 

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