How dangerous is football to the human brain?

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Curiosity Science Biology and Medicine How dangerous is football to the human brain?

  • I was reading about how much G-forces a football player experience when he heads a football. The numbers are so alarming (100+ g). What’s the magnitude of the risk of cerebral damage involved here? I have already scrutinized several comment sections and forum threads on the same topic before coming here by chance. Football lovers, kindly refrain yourself from participating in this thread. I am looking for a neutral answer here.

  • Hi @marshlow, Welcome to Geekswipe. I have read about these effects too, but not that deep. I hope you will find your answers soon enough. I have a quick question about your g-force figures. 100 G is way too much even for a football heading! Could you please link us the source?

  • I read about it here.

    Excerpt from The Guardian:

    First, the forces generated by heading back goal-kicks and goalkeeper’s punts were much higher than expected. Some registered at between 50g and 100g – similar to American Football players crashing into each other or punches thrown by boxers. What’s more, as Nauman explains: “The percentages of 100g hits was effectively the same between women’s college soccer and American Football, which really surprised us. And while American Football players tend to take more hits overall in a given practice session and game, the college soccer players were getting hit every day and so it evened out.”

    • Okay! I was quite confused at the beginning. I thought you were talking about the American Football. You could’ve rephrased it as Soccer (we Americans are quite weird, thanks to the Brits).

    • @coolnclever, Soccer == Football, American football == Rugby… You know what else is weird? Imperial Units! :P Don’t blame the Brits here! They changed a long time ago!

  • I think the guardian article is self-explanatory. A rubber ball that has a significant velocity and thereby a great change in momentum will absolutely be dangerous for the brain. If you dig enough you will find heaps of pending cases involving ex NFL players claiming for concussion damages. This also gives enough data about the long term injuries. I wonder why those researchers left them out in their studies. If you are interested, read this survey results.

    • That survey was terrifying to read. I can never watch another heading the same way again. Thanks for the links!

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