Concussions: Return to Play
Major League Baseball pitcher Alex Cobb of the Tampa Bay Rays ,was struck this weekend by an Eric Hosmer line drive.
Cobb suffered a concussion Saturday night and the incident refueled a debate over head protection for major league pitchers on the mound.
A radio broadcaster reported that unlike after Tommy John surgery, there is no process/protocol to return a player methodically back to the game. This is not entirely true.
After your athlete has been pulled from play and evaluated to have sustained a concussion by a health care provider , there are very specific steps that should be followed to return your athlete safely to play.
Current concussion recommendations are for a stepwise return to play program. In order to resume activity, the athlete must be symptom free and off any pain control or headache medications. Once the athlete is able to carry a full academic load, the following program is recommended. One step per 24 hours is the quickest(but it may take much longer per step) that the athlete progresses through this step program. The athlete must not experience any concussive symptoms(headache, nausea, vomiting, difficulty breathing) during or after the activity.
STEP ONE: No Activity- Recovery (3-10 days)
STEP TWO : About 15 minsinute of light exercise: stationery biking or jogging <70% max HR
STEP THREE: More strenuous running and sprinting in the gym or filed without equipment
STEP FOUR:Begin non-contact drills in full uniform. May also resume weight lifting.
STEP FIVE:Full practice with contact
STEP SIX: Full game clearance.
For more information on concussions and other sports related training and rehabilitation information, click here.