How Does a Football Player Avoid Injury While Getting Tackled?
- Football is a sport that pits individuals and teams in a high-speed, high-impact environment with a huge potential for injury. To minimize these injuries, players can follow a few simple rules to help avoid career- or even life-ending injuries.
Keep your Head Up
- The most devastating injury a football player can receive is one involving the neck or spine. This can lead to paralysis and even death.
To help prevent this, football players are taught to keep their head up at all times and not to tuck the chin to the body. If a player tucks his chin and puts his head down, the risk of having compression put on the neck or spine is greater.
The correct posture for all football players is a slight crouch with the face forward and the back tilted at about a 45-degree angle. This will allow any direct hit to be distributed through the body more evenly and reduce the chances of pressure being placed on the neck or spine.
Keep Your Legs Moving
- Another common injury among football players are those involving the legs and most typically the knee. Because players wear cleats to provide better grip with the ground, this can also hold the foot during a time when the rest of the body is being twisted, possibly tearing ligaments in the knee or ankle.
To avoid this, players need to keep their legs moving at all times even when doing so does not result in the player moving forward. By lifting the legs and keeping them off the ground, the player then releases the cleat from the turf and allows the leg to swing with the twisting player.
Get Behind Your Pads
- Football players are equipped with a wide variety of protective gear; using that gear properly will help players avoid injury especially around the upper body.
Again the correct posture will help the player use their pads correctly. By getting in the crouching position with the face and shoulders forward, the player can take on any ensuing blow with the large shoulder pads. This helps the player in two ways. One, the shoulder pads are designed with shock-absorbing layers to lessen the impact of the hit. Two, it allows the other player to glance off the player receiving the hit, also lessening the blow.