Policy

Concussion Protocol Resources by US Soccer, CYSA, and NPL

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A number of concussion resources have been published by US Soccer, California Youth Soccer Association, and Norcal Premier Soccer League. You can find links to their resources, below:

Heading the Ball and Head Injuries: Referee Guidelines

This table summarizes current guidelines for CYSA North and Norcal Premier. This is just a quick summary. Refer to the resource links (above) for more details. As further specific requirements are published, they will be distributed.

Item

Norcal Premier

CYSA North

Ages where heading prohibited in games

U11 and below

Age 12 and below

What to do if player heads the ball deliberately

Indirect free kick from spot of header (subject to limitations of law 13 inside goal area)

Indirect free kick from spot of header (subject to limitations of law 13 inside goal area)

What to do if suspected head/neck/back injury

Stop play immediately. Do quick evaluation. Call coach onto field to attend to player. Player must leave field (Don’t force seriously injured player to be moved though.)

Stop play immediately. Do quick evaluation. Call coach onto field to attend to player. Player must leave field (Don’t force seriously injured player to be moved though.)

Substitutions for players with head injuries

NPL: Substitution for player with head injury will not count against number of substitutions allowed

CRL: Substitution for player with head injury does not count against number of substitutions.

After the game

Report what happened on incident report.
http://www.norcalreferees
.com/incident_report/

Report what happened on concussion notification form. If none available, use incident report.
https://www.gotsport.com/forms/open/form.asp?FormID=1026

Return to play for players with head injuries

Player with head injury cannot return to play until released by healthcare professional (HCP) with knowledge and experience related to concussion evaluation and management. Don’t let player return in same game unless the HCP was identified to you before kickoff.

Player with head injury cannot return to play until released by medical doctor or doctor of osteopathy trained in concussion treatment and management.

Referee’s Quick Guide to Concussions

Recognizing what can cause concussions

  • Head hits ground
  • Head-to-head blow
  • Knee, elbow, foot striking the head-to-head
  • Ball striking head and it snaps back
  • Head striking goal post

Recognizing symptoms in conjunction with above causes

  • Loss of proprioception and or self-protection, balance problems
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Body not erect (staggering or twisted like dog running sideways)
  • Spasms/shakes/convulsions
  • Lying motionless on ground
  • Clutching/grabbing head
  • Gets up belligerent
  • Disoriented – walks toward opponent’s bench
  • Eyes rolled back in head (only whites visible)
  • Pin-point or dilated pupils

 

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