High school football players showed more than how to play football in a competitive manor; their focus on safety was evident in every session and every drill at this year’s Central European Football Camp hosted at Ansbach High School.
The camp, consisting of 283 players from Germany, England, Italy, Spain, France and Austria, concentrated on fundamentals, conditioning, group work, position skills and drills. The coaching staff infused safety throughout and specifically emphasized concussion prevention. In such a high-energy sport, that emphasis can sometimes be overlooked, but that was not the case at this event.
“Football is a lot like war. As the years have gone by, the equipment got better and better, and we kept hitting harder and harder,” said Camp Director Coach Marcus George. “We never adjusted our techniques, and we started seeing a ton more injuries.”
George was among 47 Department of Defense Dependants Schools and European coaches who staffed the clinic along with HeadsUp Football and USA Football guest coaches Michael Haynes and Chad Hester. Haynes, the son of Army and Air Force parents, is a former NFL defensive lineman who played for five seasons with the Chicago Bears. Hester has nearly 30 years of coaching experience at the youth and high school levels, has coached four undefeated seasons as a head coach and won six All-Central Texas championships.
The determination toward safety was obvious on the field and just as evident when the coaches spent late nights in a classroom with the HeadsUp team discussing concussion management, hydration and other important health and safety topics. A concussion, mild traumatic brain injury, is a head injury from a hit, blow or jolt to the head that disrupts the normal function of the brain.
“There’s never been a safer time to play the game of football,” Hester said.
This camp, in its 25th year, had returning coaches and players yearning to learn more about football fundamentals, competition and safety.
For questions about TBI, contact your Primary Care Manager or the LRMC TBI Clinic at 590-5601 or 06371-9464-5601.