English 1B 2 July 2012 Get Your “Head” in the Game “Heading is when a player propels the ball using their head”(Sports Definitions). “There are four main types of heading that occur In the game – the defensive header, used to clear the ball from the defensive area; the glancing header, used as a “pass” to advance the ball; the flick-on header which uses the back of the head to direct the ball; and the dramatic dlvlng header, used to attack or to score a goal” (Plmlott). With each of these types of headers in soccer each one must be properly learned otherwise there will be a greater chance of risk and harm to players..
If players are aught the proper and basic fundamentals of soccer then they will be able to safely head a ball. When players are not taught the proper and basics fundamentals of heading in soccer there are many risks and injuries that can occur like concussions. There are some neurologists that feel heading In soccer should be completely banned or feel that heading should not be allowed for ages fourteen and under. There is headgear currently being made and worn by high school women soccer players throughout the united states.
The headgear Is supposed to prevent concussions when heading the ball or coming into any head to head contact in occer. “Leading concussion experts say that there Is no convincing evidence that headgear prevents concussions” (Snow). Those same experts say that the protective headgear may prevent cuts and bruises and also feel that heading should be banned entirely from soccer or at least be banned from age fourteen and under. Inspite of protective gear being made there is still a high risk of concussions in women’s high school soccer.
Even with proper padding on headgear worn by players concussions are still happening. There are many female soccer players in high school who wear protective eadgear and have a sense of confidence that the headgear will protect them from getting any concussions. “Natasha Helmlck spent six years playing soccer wearing d headband. believing the headgear would prolong her soccer career by preventing concussions. Helmick, 20, said that the headgear inflated her belief that she was safer on the field and she began to play more aggressively (Snow). earing headgear in soccer will easily boost any girls’ confidence and make them play harder, it will also make the parents feel more comfortable about their daughter going head to head on the soccer field. The only problem with this Is players are still at risk come into injuries like concussions “For Helmick, the head guard gave her family confidence that she was being better protected from head injuries, but she suffered at least five concussions while wearing the headband” (Snow). Helmlck Is now sidelined from soccer for good.
There are many young women who are in high school that suffer such severe cases of concussions and they can no longer play the game they love. Some ot these young women have had up to five concussions and are only between the ages fifteen through seventeen. The concussions these young women in high school suffer are so severe they are only allowed to attend school for four hours suffering concussions in soccer accounts for the second largest amount of all concussions reported by young athletes” (Snow). From my experience with playing soccer for fifteen years, heading is a very important part of the game.
Heading is an important part of the game because it can be a matter of scoring a winning goal or even to tie the game. When I played soccer growing up I was unaware of the risks of concussions because the girls I played soccer with never received any concussions hat I was aware of. From my experience as long as coaches were teaching the proper and basic fundamentals of heading the chances of concussions were very low. I also asked a friend of mine that has played soccer for many years if she thought heading in soccer was important and this is what she said, “From a goalkeeper’s standpoint, I do feel that headers are important.
The hardest shots to block are those from headers. Being able to head the ball is a huge advantage for 50/50 balls that are in the air. Without headers the game would be played at a much lower level. Going up or a header against your opponent is an advantage and makes the game much more competitive. So yes, headers are a crucial part of the game and add a skill to the game that makes it more interesting and challenging. ” It is true that there is headgear made specifically for women’s soccer players to protect them from concussions. But my point is doctors have proven that even with the headgear concussions will still happen.
This is causing experts to make a bold proposal of completely eliminating heading in soccer altogether. As a long time player myself I feel it would be wrong to take out such an important part of the game. I asked and friend of mine how she would feel if they banned heading from soccer and this is what she said, “Personally, I do not feel like removing an aspect of the game that has been natural for so long would be plausible. Even if it were removed, it would be very difficult to prevent it from happening. For most players, it is a natural part of the game.
For instance, if you have been trained for so long on heading a 50/50 ball in the air it will be very difficult to re-train yourself not to. ” Doctors are also thinking of putting an age limit on heading if heading is not banned from soccer, xperts say to ban heading under the age of fourteen. “It’s a part of the game and I think it’s an important part and I think it’s a beautiful part of the game, to be honest with you. ” (Chastain) Brandi Chastain is an Olympic gold medallist soccer player who voiced her opinion on how she feels about heading being banned in girls soccer. l would never want to see that go away, but there’s a right way to do it. There’s a protective way to do it. ” (Chastain) A reader might ask don’t women know of the risk of injuries when it comes to playing soccer but the real issue is the amount of concussions throughout women’s high school soccer. Coaches are not taking the extra time to teach their girl’s on how to head a ball properly, even with the headgear the amount of concussions are still increasing. I feel from my experience playing soccer that as long as you are properly taught how to head a ball then it can be a safe part of the game.
I believe that there are many young women who keep Joining soccer leagues at all different ages, therefore coaches should be teaching or reminding girls how to properly head a ball to prevent any injuries from happening. There is nothing wrong with going over the simple and basic fundamentals of soccer gain at different ages. I asked my long time friend who has played soccer for twenty she said the following, “If a coach teaches the proper skills that go into a header, the chances of a concussion will lessen.
It is those players that are not fully confident and perform an improper header that get hurt. I understand that the chances of two players accidentally head butting each other is still there but again, if they are taught how to properly go up for a header the chance of that will lessen. ” It upsets me at the fact that doctors want to ban heading from soccer, whether it be completely or even ut an age limit on it. As long as coaches are really enforcing the proper technique of heading then the risks of concussions should decrease. Heading is an important and dramatic element of the game of soccer. By teaching young players proper technique and using age appropriate balls coaches can reduce the risk of injury in youth players while still providing them with this important tool of the game” (Pimlott). Overall inspite of protective gear being made there is still a high risk of concussions in women’s high school soccer. If coaches were to really focus on teaching their girls ow to properly head a ball regardless of their ages, then concussions would decrease.
The fact that headgear is being worn and is still causing concussions for womens high school soccer players is a problem. As a soccer player of over fifteen years I understand the dangers and harms that come from playing soccer but I feel that as long as heading is taught properly then there will not be as many risks of concussions between players. I also understand that players are going to bump heads attempting to go for the same header but if the proper space is created around the player then it will lessen the risk of players bumping heads.