South Dakota Group Considers Concussion Rules for High School Football

January 21, 2015

The association that governs high school sports in South Dakota is considering new rules aimed at reducing concussions among prep football players.

The High School Activities Association Board of Directors might adopt recommendations and guidelines from the National Federation of State High School Associations. Some type of change to improve player safety is almost a certainty, the Argus Leader reported.

“Once information and science provide that there are new techniques to reduce risk to student athletes, there naturally will be changes to policy,” Association Assistant Executive Director John Krogstrand said.

Concussions and lawsuits have become an issue at the college and pro football levels, and Krogstrand says they are a matter of concern for any group sanctioning organized football.

One recommended guideline the board discussed Wednesday in Pierre is limiting “full contact” practice to no more than three 30-minute sessions in one week. Officials would need to clarify such things as what constitutes “full contact,” and what would happen if full-contact and noncontact drills occurred at the same time during a practice, according to Krogstrand.

“We’re going to need to further define some of the questions that would come up as a result of those policy recommendations,” he said.

Other player safety recommendations the association will consider include reducing preseason practice and limiting players to eight game quarters per week.

The board of directors meets again in March.

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