It's only June but not too early for football as any die-hard football fan will tell you. That sentiment spans all levels including the beginners which now include my two grandsons.
Cole & Nicholas just received their uniforms and practice is set to start July 1st. (see my website photo gallery for their pictures georgeswebpage.com) Junior football involves an enormous commitment. It's every night of the week! Games don't actually begin until some time in late August.
I have mixed feelings about all of this. On one hand I like that the boys are interested in sports and willing to try anything but on the other hand I, like many others, have been following the research and the issue of concussions is a very real concern.
There are those who tend to poo poo it and say kids run all kinds of risks only one of which is football. Then there's the other extreme that says football should be banned. Period. Both extremes are, well, extreme.
I tend to fall in the middle. Yes, football is a sport and therefore inherently risky. Consider for example the fact that soccer is often responsible for more concussions than football (thus the ban on heading the ball by some leagues).
But I'm a man of science. I believe in research, evidence and facts regardless of whether or not it flies in the face of a popular activity. On this issue the research is on-going but it is getting clearer. Thus the recommendation of the medical community: three concussions and you're out-forever. No exceptions.
I believe my son and daughter-in-law are very aware of this and are taking a watch and wait attitude. If things proceed as planned, great. The boys do something they enjoy (if in fact they do enjoy it. The jury is still out on that), they learn the skills and teamwork that goes with the sport. If things start to get ugly, then it's on to something else.
That works for me and seems to represent a very common sense approach to just about anything kids do. Unfortunately not all parents possess common sense which could result in life-long health issues.