UK Concussion Guidelines for Non-Elite (Grassroots) Sport

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UK Concussion Guidelines for Non-Elite (Grassroots) Sport

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

On the 28th of April 2023 the UK Government released the new UK Concussion Guidelines for Non-Elite (Grassroots) Sport. Chris reacted saying “Is fantastic to see that the government have released the latest these new concussion guidelines for grassroots sports clubs. We have been aware that these were due to be released for many months and we wholeheartedly recommend that all grassroots sports clubs, coaches, and other interested parties download the guidelines and read through them.

From a conference that we attended in October 2022, we understood that the process in releasing the new guidelines were reliant upon a change to the NHS111 call screening algorithm. The release of the guidelines indicates that this change has been made, alongside other recent changes to the call screening protocols.”

The new guidelines

The initial assessment section of the new concussion guidelines, alongside the “red flags” are based upon the 5th edition of the concussion recognition tool which itself is due to be updated soon following the 6th international consensus conference on concussion which was held in Amsterdam in October 2022.

At Chris Garland Training, we strongly recommend that all first aiders download and familiarise themselves with the new guidelines as these clearly indicate the visual clues (signs) and symptoms (what the casualty can describe) of concussion. The guidelines also give concise information with regards to what you should do in the immediate management of suspected concussion. These are broken down into your roles and responsibilities whether you are a coach, teacher, volunteer, a parent or carer. They also give clear advice for the players themselves.

Concussion management

The hardest part of concussion management has always been the graduated return to activity whether this be to work or to the educational environment. We are pleased to see that the new guidelines reflect the existing graduated return to activity guidelines for those over 19 (adults) and remain broadly similar for those under 19 (children).

Briefly these are;

  1. Relative rest for 24 to 48 hours.
  2. Gradually introduce daily activities
  3. Increase tolerance for mental and exercise activities
  4. Return to study/work and sport training
  5. Return to normal work/education and full training
  6. Return to sports competition

Notably stage six must not be before day 21 and the individual must be symptom free at rest for 14 days and during the pre-competition training of stage 5.

Concussion Training for Coaches

At Chris Garland Training we run a concussion in sports awareness course. This 3 hour course is held at our training facility in Knutsford or can be carried out at your premises as you require. The course covers all aspects of concussion from what it is and the effects, to the complications of concussion such as second impact syndrome and post-concussion syndrome.

The course also covers these new concussion guidance protocols and how to carry out immediate assessments and what return to play protocols are needed for both adults and children. Why not contact us and we can talk through your requirements and come up with the best options for us to help you manage concussions within your sports team or club.

UK Concussion Guidelines for Non-Elite (Grassroots) Sport

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