Heading

Statto

Free Kick Specialist

Much as I kind of like the idea behind this (dementia links, kids are still developing etc etc and it probably isn't that good for them) the ability to head a ball is a key part of the game and 12 is probably a bit too old to learn how to head.

Also, if English kids are banned from heading until 12 but other countries don't do the same, in 10-15 years how is this going to affect national/club sides?
 

valspoodle

Stuart Pearce
Never liked heading the ball, although the heavy leather ball back in the day was a bit of a lump.

I would skilfully and cleverly bring the ball down on my chest and flick a defence-splitting ball to our CF for another assist.

Or I would skilfully and cleverly moved sideways to let some other poor sucker head it.
 

weejockmcplop

Youth Team
Never liked heading the ball, although the heavy leather ball back in the day was a bit of a lump.

I would skilfully and cleverly bring the ball down on my chest and flick a defence-splitting ball to our CF for another assist.

Or I would skilfully and cleverly moved sideways to let some other poor sucker head it.
One of my first proper games when i was 9-10 years old i got a broken nose from a throw in where i misjudged the header.
That was PROPER football.
 

Redemption

just like that!

Much as I kind of like the idea behind this (dementia links, kids are still developing etc etc and it probably isn't that good for them) the ability to head a ball is a key part of the game and 12 is probably a bit too old to learn how to head.

Also, if English kids are banned from heading until 12 but other countries don't do the same, in 10-15 years how is this going to affect national/club sides?
You would advise that we ignore the science/medical evidence so we can maintain par with other nations?
 

Huxley

John Robertson
As it stands you’re not allowed to practice heading in training with primary age kids anyway so it’s really not a huge leap.
 

Statto

Free Kick Specialist
You would advise that we ignore the science/medical evidence so we can maintain par with other nations?
Not at all. The health of the kids is much more important than anything else. We can also see that the pathway for even U18 academy players to be first team regulars isn't there only in the most exceptional cases and even less so at the club they came through at. You can see that by the numbers our Academy loan out (especially this season) and even release who then join other club sides. A fair number of them won't be footballers at all so you don't want them heading the ball too much and causing longer term effects.

Let's just assume for a second that English clubs don't teach heading at all to the younger age groups but the likes of French or German kids do, if you don't teach the kids how to until let's say 15 then they only have 3/4 years to master that before they're adults and signing pro contracts, on the fringe of first team etc. For some positions it doesn't matter as much but central defenders and strikers more than others need good heading as part of their games, purely from the perspective of that single attribute, and ignoring the positive effects of not doing it, these kids will be behind in terms of ability.

What of course needs to happen is that if it is unsafe (and it clearly is) then FIFA needs to say, no heading under this age, and for that to apply everywhere. To be fair I don't really think it's that good for anyone really even though the balls are much lighter than they used to be.
 

Redemption

just like that!
Lighter balls = faster speed = force/momentum etc

I expect that eventually, FIFA will implement a ruling on it.

But I would take being behind on headers in-game, as I'm certain other opportunities would come from it.
We could become the world's greatest chesters of the ball.

Or we could go wholly literal and have no contact with the ball except with the foot.
 

Huxley

John Robertson
Not at all. The health of the kids is much more important than anything else. We can also see that the pathway for even U18 academy players to be first team regulars isn't there only in the most exceptional cases and even less so at the club they came through at. You can see that by the numbers our Academy loan out (especially this season) and even release who then join other club sides. A fair number of them won't be footballers at all so you don't want them heading the ball too much and causing longer term effects.

Let's just assume for a second that English clubs don't teach heading at all to the younger age groups but the likes of French or German kids do, if you don't teach the kids how to until let's say 15 then they only have 3/4 years to master that before they're adults and signing pro contracts, on the fringe of first team etc. For some positions it doesn't matter as much but central defenders and strikers more than others need good heading as part of their games, purely from the perspective of that single attribute, and ignoring the positive effects of not doing it, these kids will be behind in terms of ability.

What of course needs to happen is that if it is unsafe (and it clearly is) then FIFA needs to say, no heading under this age, and for that to apply everywhere. To be fair I don't really think it's that good for anyone really even though the balls are much lighter than they used to be.

Heading isn’t really a difficult skill to master. Anyone with an ounce of athletic ability could probably pick it up over a weekend.

The basics can be taught with lighter 10p floater type balls and progress from there to a competitive situation.
 

Huxley

John Robertson
….and for the record, I’m pretty certain no other nation is making kids do heading drills.
 

Canadian_red

Viv Anderson
Somewhat related, former Wales rugby captain Ryan Jones (who I used to play with namedrop) recently got diagnosed with early onset dimentia/CTE at 41. Different sport with very different impact on the head/brain but scary nonetheless. A few cases in the NFL have ended in pretty tragic circumstances and there's a documentary on Aaron Hernandez that covers one of them, and a murder.

We just don't know enough and are playing serious catchup on it. I'm pretty pleased I stopped playing in my early 20s; had a few concussions and would be concerned if I'd continued.
 
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Statto

Free Kick Specialist
Somewhat related, former Wales rugby captain Ryan Jones (who I used to play with namedrop) recently got diagnosed with early onset dimentia/CTE at 41. Different sport with very different impact on the head/brain but scary nonetheless. A few cases in the NFL have ended in pretty tragic circumstances and there's a documentary on Aaron Hernandez that covers one of them, and a murder.

We just don't know enough and are playing serious catchup on it. I'm pretty pleased I stopped playing in my early 20s; had a few concussions and would be concerned if I'd continued.
That was one of the few advantages of being built like a 9 year old when starting secondary. Despite our school being pretty big on rugby, thankfully I barely got to play it...
 

Raymondo Ponte'

It's all about mid-table...
Well, they are nowadays.

Their parent will be preparing the documents for compensation with their local solicitor.
 
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