Several states might ban tackle football for kids. Illinois and New York would feature the first law of its kind to outright change how youth sport is played. The action follows a recent study from Boston University, which suggests that kids under the age of 14 playing football are at a higher risk developing short and long-term brain damage, such as behavioral problems and depression.
The study also says that you don’t need a concussion to get CTE.
“The more years you play, the greater the risk of CTE. The only way to (shorten) the years of tackle football is to prevent it at the beginning.” Chris Nowinski, of the Concussion Legacy Foundation, explained to the Chicago Tribune.
Some are skeptical that the law would be effective — one doctor who advises Pop Warner football stated, “There’s no scientific consensus that 12 or 11 is a threshold age below which (tackle football) becomes more dangerous.”
Illinois proposed the bill the day after New York reintroduced it. The law would follow the path of other youth sports that already have player safety rules in place, like soccer, which bans heading for children under the age of 11, and hockey, which bans checking for children under 13.