Tip of the Week
Today’s schoolboy football players are not only bigger and stronger, but the game itself is faster and more advanced than ever before. Few people better understand the unique combination of excitement, stress and pride of a football parent than Leslie Matthews, matriarch of one of the largest and long-standing football families in the history of the sport. While her sons, Clay Matthews III of the Green Bay Packers and Casey Matthews of the Philadelphia Eagles, gear up and hit the field with pride every Sunday, the perspective from the stands can be an emotional roller coaster ride.
Matthews wants all football parents to understand they can take steps to manage their child’s well-being throughout the season. She encourages parents to get hands-on when it comes to safety, and suggests brushing up on the latest available equipment advancements. Maintaining an open line of communication with coaches and administrators is also paramount.
“I want all parents to know it’s OK to ask the tough questions when it comes to your child’s program,” says Matthews. “Find out the coach’s approach to teaching proper technique. Discuss player management and safety protocol. Ask if he or she has considered the latest equipment. The game of football is not only faster and stronger, but it’s smarter too, and we need to take advantage of the technology that’s available.”
Number to Know
11.2: The number of concussions suffered by high school football players for every 10,000 games and practices, almost double the rate for college players (6.3).
Researchers in New Zealand tested whether the additional use of hand sanitizers in the school classroom would be an effective way of lessening the spread of spread of childhood disease. The study found almost no difference between the group using only soap-and-water washing and the group using hand sanitizer in addition to washing.
A chemical in the pomegranate fruit could help slow the progression of diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, according to a study from England’s University of Huddersfield. The study, published in the journal Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, shows that the compound punicalagin may inhibit inflammation in the brain, which could serve as a way of slowing the progression of the diseases.
Middle-aged people who are obese could be at greater risk for dementia later in life, research from the University of Oxford suggests. The study, published in the Postgraduate Medical Journal, found the risk of developing dementia was about 3.5 times higher for those aged 30 to 39 who were obese than for the non-obese in the same age group. They also found a 70 percent heightened risk for obese people in their 40s, which fell to 50 percent for those in their 50s and 40 percent for those in their 60s.
Health Watch: Football concerns for parents
Tip of the Week