Before the first full contact football practice takes place today, football parents should check with their son's head coach to see if they teach "face mask on the football" tackling.
August 20, 2013
Director Beattie, Dr. Tillman, and Ms. Glick,
Last week, [MCPS High School] football head coach told parents that, when teaching tackling, he teaches students to "put your face mask on the football," and "bite the football." The [MCPS High School] head coach has been teaching this technique for several years. As you can see in the email exchange below, I shared with the head coach my concerns that "face mask on the football" has long been viewed as a dangerous technique that conflicts with current best practices supported by the National Federation of High School Athletic Associations (NFHS) and currently being taught in Fairfax County, Virginia, and elsewhere across the country.
"Face mask on the football" tackling is dangerous because it exposes the tackler to a great risk of a catastrophic cervical spine injury--with the possibility of the tackler being rendered a quadriplegic--every time the tackle is attempted. Just over the weekend, a high school football defensive back in Georgia died from a neck injury after making a tackle.
The Head-Down tackling that the face mask on the football technique requires is also believed to increase the risk of the tackler sustaining a concussion.Continue reading at the link: