A recent annual football kickoff dinner brought together area football coaches to discuss health issues facing players this season.
Bradwell Institute coach Adam Carter, Liberty County High School coach Kirk Warner and Long County coach Ron Flott joined fellow coaches from 13 area high schools for the fifth annual event at Crabdaddy’s on St. Simons Island. The dinner was sponsored by the high-school sports magazine, In The Game. The magazine, available at Flash Foods, covers 11 Southeast Georgia counties, including Liberty and Long.
Southeast Health Systems trainer Chip McCarty spoke at the dinner about the new legislation passed by the Georgia Assembly aimed at decreasing injuries associated with concussions. McCarty, a certified trainer who works with McIntosh County Academy, was part of the Georgia Concussion group that testified in front of the Legislature and helped write the bill. The bill, known as the “Return to Play Act of 2013,” gives players who may have suffered a concussion a three-pronged test before returning to the field.
Another big health issue confronting coaches is the South Georgia heat.
“The (Georgia High School Association), along with local school policy, makes sure we keep athletes safe and hydrated during the early days of practices,” McCarty said. “All players must go through five days of acclimation before they can go the can start wearing full pads. Most schools do not to do two-a-days anymore since a lot of schools start early now, but those that have two practices in one day have to use the next day for a rest day.”
Also at the event, the coaches did radio interviews and posed for photos.