What Every Soccer Mom Should Know


Soccer may be more violent than it seems: Research shows that soccer players have worse memory and planning skills than other athletes tested, thanks to the head blows the game involves.

Barry Jordan, M.D., gave neuropsychological exams to high-level amateur soccer players, swimmers and runners. Disturbingly, 27% of soccer players displayed moderately to severely impaired memory and 39% showed similarly poor planning skills, compared to 7% and 13% of the other athletes. Soccer players suffer an unusually high number of concussions, says Jordan, director of the traumatic brain injury program at New York's Burke Rehabilitation Hospital, warning: "Kids should be well supervised and instructed, especially if they're going to head-butt the ball."

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