On July 1, 2019, it is anticipated that new rules will come into effect through .Rowan’s Law, to improve concussion safety in amateur competitive sport.
If you are a coach and your sport organization has advised that you will need to follow the rules of Rowan’s Law you will need to:
- review any one of the official concussion awareness resources before registering or serving with your sport organization
- review your sport organization’s Code of Conduct that they will provide to you
- confirm that you have reviewed both of these resources every year with your sport organization(s)
Rowan’s Law (Concussion Safety), 2018, makes Ontario a national leader in concussion management and prevention by establishing mandatory requirements that call for:
- Annual review of concussion awareness resources that help prevent, identify and manage concussions, which athletes, coaches, educators and parents would be required to review before registering in a sport
- Removal-from-sport and return-to-sport protocols, to ensure that an athlete is immediately removed from sport if they are suspected of having sustained a concussion and giving them the time required to heal properly
- A concussion code of conduct that would set out rules of behaviour to minimize concussions while playing sport.
In honour of Rowan Stringer, the 17-year-old rugby player whose death resulted from sustaining multiple concussions, the legislation establishes the last Wednesday in September as “Rowan’s Law Day”.
Ontario is the first jurisdiction in Canada to pass concussion safety legislation, setting a precedent for sport legislation across the country. The Ontario government worked closely with key medical experts, athletes, coaches and sport leaders – most notably the members of the Rowan’s Law Advisory Committee – in establishing this first-of-its-kind legislation.
Making Head Way – Concussion eLearning Series
Designed to help you gain the knowledge and skills required to ensure the safety of your athletes, these NCCP Professional Development modules will make you concussion smart!
6 Modules to choose from – Sport (Generic), Soccer, Snowboard, Speed Skating, Freestyle Ski, and Football.
To begin, you will require a NCCP#. If you have never taken an NCCP course and need a NCCP#, please register with The Locker.
You should expect to spend 60-90 minutes completing a module. Each completed module will be recorded on your coaching transcript as professional development.
Below are the top 10 ways to help prevent concussions from happening in you sport and how to be being prepared for them when they do happen.
- Get trained in NCCP Making Head Way in Sport!
- Review the Concussion Guidelines for Coaches annually.
– If your sport organization has advised you that you need to follow the rules of Rowan’s Law please review one format of the following Concussion Awareness Resourses annually.
– If you are a Teacher-Coach you must also review the Ontario Physical Activity Safety Standards in Education on Concussions annually.
- Review your Sport’s Concussion Policy annually.
- Discuss concussions with parents and athletes during your pre-season meeting.
- Share the Concussion Guideline documents with everyone involved in your sport (coaches, parents, and athletes).
- Have a Player Code of Conduct that ensures safe play.
– If your sport organization has advised you that you need to follow the rules of Rowan’s Law please review and utilize your sport organization’s Code of Conduct that they will provide to you
- Ensure your athletes are wearing properly fitted equipment and obey the rules of the sport.
- Promote an open relationship between you and your athletes so they feel safe and comfortable reporting injuries and understand the risks of not doing so.
- Review your sport specific resources for drills and activities that can reduce the risk of concussion and other injuries
- Utilise the useful resources in this Tool Kit!
A concussion should be suspected in any athlete who sustains a significant impact to the head, face, neck, or body and demonstrates ANY of the visual signs of a suspected concussion or reports ANY symptoms of a suspected concussion (see CRT5).
WHEN IN DOUBT SIT THEM OUT!
Any athlete with a suspected concussion should be removed from activity immediately for medical assessment by a medical doctor or nurse practitioner.
No-Concussion diagnosis by a medial doctor or nurse practitioner = return to activity
Concussion diagnosis by a medial doctor or nurse practitioner = graduated return to sport strategy (consult your Sport’s Concussion Policy and/or Return to Sport Guidelines)
This is an important time to remind parents and athletes of the guidelines and pre-season documents they received. It takes everyone involved to ensure a safe return to activity!