HSOT Today

NFL awards UNC grant to study concussions

Posted January 13, 2011

NFL Charities has awarded a $100,000 grant to the University of North Carolina to support research into concussions.

The grant was given to the university's Center for the Study of Retired Athletes.

Heading up the research is Dr. Kevin Guskiewicz, Kenan Distinguished Professor and chair of the department of exercise and sport science in the College of Arts and Sciences, who has also worked closely with the North Carolina High School Athletic Association.

Guskiewicz headed a task force in 2008 for the NCHSAA that looked at sports medicine issues in North Carolina high schools after several deaths of high school student-athletes at member schools.

The task force made several recommendations about concussion management that were approved by the NCHSAA Board of Directors. One recommendation from the task force was that all schools hire a certified trainer, but there has no funding available for that.

The new grant from NFL Charities will be used to continue research into the connection between football and dementia in retired players.

Retired athletes will be studied to see if they had higher degrees of mild brain injury and are more likely to develop brain-related disorders than athletes who didn't play beyond college.

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