As the number of females participating in youth soccer programs continues to increase, so does the number of sports-related concussions for females under the age of 18. Of the more than 3 million kids registered to play youth soccer in the US, girls make up 48% of that group.
A new report shows that girls are reporting nearly twice as many concussions as boys in the sports they both play, including soccer. The number of girls suffering concussions in soccer accounts for the second largest amount of all concussions reported by young athletes, according to the American Journal of Sports Medicine. (Football tops the list.)
Though most people believe soccer is a relatively safe sport when discussing the chance of sustaining a concussion, “heading” has led to more concussions in the past few years than most would imagine. When heading, players attempt to use their foreheads to direct the ball, often jumping with opposing players. This move can lead to collisions between players, bumped heads and strained necks. Heading is one of the most dangerous parts of soccer because players often collide.