Friday, December 02, 2011


A soccer ball can really hurt the brain, while a frisbee may cause a mere malady. Play Ultimate!

Hitting a Soccer Ball With Your Head Linked to Brain Injuries [BizWeek]

Hitting a soccer ball with your head, a technique used in scoring and passing, over time is linked to brain injuries that can affect memory in amateur adult players, researchers found.

Those who “headed” the ball more than 1,300 times a year, the equivalent of a few times a day, were more likely to have injuries to areas of the brain responsible for attention, memory, planning, organizing and vision, according to research presented today at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America in Chicago.

Brain injuries in sports are receiving more attention as states and sports organizations enact rules to increase safety. Soccer balls can go as fast as 34 miles an hour during recreational play and more than twice that speed in professional games, researchers said. Determining how much heading a person can do before injuring the brain is the next step, said lead study author Michael Lipton....

Soccer, or football as it’s known outside the U.S., is the world’s most-popular sport. While about 78% of the 18 million Americans who play are under the age of 18, it’s unclear what the findings might mean for kids, Lipton said. “There is a lot of reason to be concerned that the effects could be magnified in children,” he said.

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