Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A sports parents' guide to concussions

Recently I completed the manuscript for "The Most Expensive Game in Town: The Rising Cost of Youth Sports and the Toll on Today's Families." It's a book about Corporate America, big money and how they're changing the games that our kids play. Beacon Press is publishing in March. More about the book - and the reporting that went into it - in the coming months.

My next project is a book about kids sports and concussions. This time, I'm fortunate to be collaborating with Robert Cantu, a neurosurgeon and pioneering expert in the field. Dr. Cantu is an adviser to the National Football League and one of those responsible for nudging the league to a more sensible place in protecting players. He's also co-founder of the Sports Legacy Institute, a remarkable organization studying brain disease among ex-athletes. More than 300 pro and amateur athletes have willed their brains to the institute, including the NFL Hall of Famer John Mackey, who died this month after a long struggle with dementia.

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt is publishing the book. We hope it will be a valuable resource for sports parents and coaches - kids too.

I'm meeting a number of remarkable former youth athletes whose experiences with concussions have forced them to quit sports. In many cases, they've turned their energies in other directions, often with the goal of sparing other kids the trouble that came their way. Here's one shining example, a short documentary on concussions created by Catholic University student TJ Cooney. You really ought to take a few minutes to watch this.

The Silent Epidemic from TJ Cooney on Vimeo.

1 comment:

Sports Mom said...

I am so glad to see this information being shared. A friend of ours has just recovered after almost of year of post-concussion syndrome. All sports leagues need to be more aware and make safety more of a priority.