A concussion is an injury to the brain caused by a hit to the head or face. The brain can shake inside the skull causing a chemical reaction that interferes with its function. It can sometimes cause swelling or bleeding of the brain. It is very important to get medical attention for a concussion. Younger athletes brains are still developing and they need a longer time to recover from a concussion. Returning an athlete too soon to competition before the brain has healed can lead to a much more serious injury and can even lead to a catastrophic injury.
Once your son or daughter has been diagnosed with a concussion and is cleared by a licensed physician to start the Return to Play Protocol, the Athletic Trainer (ATC) will follow these guidelines below. These steps must be done under the supervision of an ATC and they are not to be done at home unless directed by the doctor.
ZURICH RETURN TO ACTIVITY PROGRESSION
We follow a stepwise activity progression based on recommendations in the Zurich Consensus Statement from the 3rd International Congress on Concussion in Sport as follows:
Step 1: Light aerobic exercise (i.e.: stationary bike, elliptical machine)
Step 2: Moderate aerobic exercises
Step 3: Functional exercises (increase running intensity; begin agilities, non-contact sport-specific drills)
Step 4: Non-contact practice activities
Step 5: Full contact practice
Step 6: Full gameplay
Each of these steps will take 24-48 hours to complete. The athlete will progress to the next step only if they have remained symptom-free.
If symptoms return, the athlete will be removed from activity and a 24-hour suspension of progression will take place before resuming to the previous level. If symptoms do not resolve, the athlete will be referred back to their physician. Upon successful completion of all these steps, the athlete may return to full practice and competition.
Please know that any note from a physician will not be used to override the LVHN Concussion protocol.
Coaches and parents/guardian are not qualified or allowed to make a "return to play" decision.