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Tue Oct 22, 2019, 05:20 AM

((Is modern soccer safe? Old time soccer wasn't))

https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/50124102


Dementia in football: Ex-players three and a half times more likely to die of condition

21 October 2019
From the section Football

Former professional footballers are three and a half times more likely to die of dementia than people of the same age range in the general population, according to new research.

Experts at Glasgow University have been investigating fears that heading the ball could be linked to brain injuries.
(snip)

It compared deaths of 7,676 ex-players to 23,000 from the general population. The sample was taken from men who played professional football in Scotland between 1900 and 1976.
(snip)

It began in January last year and was led by consultant neuropathologist Dr Willie Stewart, who said that "risk ranged from a five-fold increase in Alzheimer's disease, through an approximately four-fold increase in motor neurone disease, to a two-fold Parkinson's disease in former professional footballers compared to population controls".

Although footballers had higher risk of death from neurodegenerative disease, they were less likely to die of other common diseases, such as heart disease and some cancers, including lung cancer.
(snip)

The link between contact sport participation and neurodegenerative disease has been subject to debate in recent years, but until this study, it was not clear whether there was any evidence of an increase in neurodegenerative disease rate in former footballers.

Former England international Astle developed dementia and died in 2002 at the age of 59. The inquest into his death found heading heavy leather footballs repeatedly had contributed to trauma to his brain.
(snip)

Speaking about the findings of the Field (Football's Influence on Lifelong Health and Dementia Risk) research, various stakeholders said more research was needed.
(snip)

Brain injury charity Headway said further research should focus on modern lightweight footballs.
(snip)

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Reply ((Is modern soccer safe? Old time soccer wasn't)) (Original post)
nitpicker Oct 22 OP
nitpicker Oct 22 #1
brush Oct 22 #2

Response to nitpicker (Original post)

Tue Oct 22, 2019, 05:22 AM

1. Soccer ball changed in the 1980s

https://soccer.epicsports.com/soccer-ball-history.html

(snip)
In 1951 soccer enjoyed better visibility with the official introduction of the white soccer ball, although they had already been in use since 1892. The soccer ball was made white simply by whitewashing the leather. And if a team had a certain propensity for playing soccer in the snow, well there was even a ball for that. It was orange, rather than white.

And it's on to the synthetic soccer ball made in the 1960s. But it would be 20 more years before the first soccer ball made entirely out of synthetic materials was manufactured. Such a ball was able to similate the quality and feel of leather, but offered a more reliable performance and less water absorption.
(snip)

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Response to nitpicker (Original post)

Tue Oct 22, 2019, 08:49 AM

2. Is it time for soccer/football players to wear helmets like American footballers?

Maybe more like hockey player helmets rather than the full-head helmets of American football—just big enough to absorb the energy of the soccer ball hitting the head when attempting to head the ball.

Of note: It wasn't until the '70s that hockey players started wearing them. Goalies, sensibly, started it before the rest of the players began wearing them.

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