A new policy for Canada’s professional football league (CFL) intends to reduce injuries to players resulting from full contact practices during the regular season.

A new policy for Canada’s professional football league (CFL) intends to reduce injuries to players resulting from full contact practices during the regular season.
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CFL –no hit practices; fewer injuries-concussions

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The Canadian Football League (N.American style football) has announced an immediate policy change in an effort to reduce injuries and concussions.

The League and players union together announced an immediate halt to full contact, padded practices during the regular season.

The idea is to reduce the number of hard collisions the players endure over the season.

Winnipeg Blue Bombers’ Buck Pierce is sacked by Saskatchewan Roughriders’ Tearrius George during the first half of their CFL game in Winnipeg Sunday, September 11, 2011
Winnipeg Blue Bombers’ Buck Pierce is sacked by Saskatchewan Roughriders’ Tearrius George during a CFL game in 2011. By eliminating full contact-padded hits in practice, the league and players hope to reduce overall injuries © John Woods/Canadian Press)

The announcement comes as more and more evidence reveals such issues as brain damage from repeated blows to the head.

Teams have been allowed full contact with pads practices during training camps and up to 17 during the season.

Most teams have about one such full contact with pads practice per week during the season,

Saskatchewan Roughriders traininig camp spring 2017. Full contact with pads will still be allowed at camps, but no longer during regular season practices. Helmets will be allowed however in those practices.
CFL’s Saskatchewan Roughriders traininig camp spring 2017. Full contact with pads will still be allowed at camps, but no longer during regular season practices. Helmets will be allowed however in those practices. © Glenn Reid/CBC

Both the league and players union says the new policy will reduce injuries and keep players healthier for actual games.  Contact during training camp will still be allowed, but no longer during the season.  Additional changes include a lengthened season and a effort to reduce “quick turnarounds”, i.e. games played with little interval in between.

Earlier this summer, a study done by Boston University found 99 percent of the donated brains of former U.S. NFL players showed evidence of damage.

A similar study done by McMaster University in Hamilton Ontario also showed significant damage to the cerebral cortex of former CFL players.

Additional information –sources

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