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No Heading allowed.


KB1862
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https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/58585429

There's going to be a match later this month with heading restrictions in place. First half headers in area, second half no headers. 

While I'm all for the research of brain injury caused by heading a football and I do believe that some cases of dimentia may have been caused by this, there is the factor of balls being lighter these days compared to the ones years ago when they were solid and soaked up rain to make them heavier. 

I don't think the game could be without heading. 

As I said I'm all for the research but is the game being without heading beneficial for football as a whole? 

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If you ban heading in football, then the game is done. It will only be played by small, quick and super agile players, there will be no need for the big lumps at the back.

On the plus side, Notts would at least be at an advantage as we haven't been able to defend set pieces for years!

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I think we are smart enough as human's to learn more about head injuries, but it seems that no middle ground is ever found in situations like this. It's naturally something that must be explored, the older football caused a lot of issues due to their design and modern ones are slowly combating this. Heading a football is dangerous, but a lot less than anywhere before the 90s. Yet the research being done must eventually determine ways around outright banning headers.

As I say, repeatedly heading a ball is something that can cause concern in the long term - we tend to neglect this side.

Yet to ban heading a ball completely, just seems to me that it's extremely out of hand.

If it's proven that heading a modern football is too dangerous, then I would understand, but I do think we can make balls feel lighter. Whilst understanding how many times you can head a ball during a match can be a worry.

I think common sense should always be applied, I wouldn't want any footballer - especially a Notts player to put his health at risk after retirement or to cause any sort of damage.

Not knowing, not having the right search is as big of a problem as heading a ball itself.

We tend to head a football without thinking it can cause issues, so understanding the full risk and exploring ways to improve any potential situation is a must. I don't think modern footballs are anywhere near as dangerous as those that absorbed water or was made of pigs bladders.

At the end of the day, kicking a ball itself can cause damage to a players feet - just like ballerina's do, yet boots have changed from the 40s/50s/60s/70s/80s etc.

They offer more protection than ever before, so surely looking at improving balls and understanding the risk completely would help to reduce any long term issues. Banning heading just seems very over the top to me.

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@Chris 100% agree with the points you are making mate. 

Every sport/activity comes with an element of risk with it. No matter how basic. 

Back in the day me and my mates used to kick the ball high up in the air and see who could head it. When you head a ball with force you do feel it on your head and obviously that is a sign of causing an impact. 

With the balls of today with the speed the ball travels out now and the power forced upon it still causes issues but not as much as it once upon a time did like you say. 

The middle ground is probably limiting the amount of headers done in training which is being applied in some places. Realistically heading training doesn't need to be played over and over. 

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i think the game would be lost without it, i know heading is supposed to be reduced in training and i absolutely agree that when its not needed it should not happen. the players are the people to make the decision, you dont see many pulling out of heading a ball.

better research into concussions and long term brain injuries is needed.

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I'm definitely in favour of more research on the link between heading and brain injuries. It's a difficult one and I don't pretend to know the answers.

It seems intuitively obvious that the link will be strongest in those who played in the 50s and 60s, when the ball was heavier than today. But what about the frequent clashes of heads - an inevitable result of challenging for headers in any era? There's at least one nasty clash in every match, and probably more in training too.

I hope the powers can be can work something out to protect the safety of the players without altering the fabric of the game in the way that @Fozzy described. Trouble is, it'll be decades before we know if it works...

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For me it’s hard to imagine a game of football without heading. All free-kicks would be shots or a simple quick pass. And as for corners, it would pretty much be the end of them…

I think the game has evolved anyway and now in general we see a lot more of the football on the floor. And the balls now are cushioned and much lighter. I found an old football in my dad’s shed over the summer… Think it was from the 70’s, it’s very thick and felt heavy and horrible.

I’m all for the research though, like you say the proper stuff where the effects can be evaluated will be years away. But maybe something as basic as just tracking how much a player is heading the ball. Could you then possibly get comparisons to how much it was years ago? I think heading, both matches and training, now is something that is far less frequent.

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The most hilarious head butt in football history came from our much  revered Prime Minister Boris Johnson (piethagoram might like this one) in a charity game.  He seemed to forget he was on a football pitch, and reverted to something between a rugby tackle and 'what we got up to at public school':

  

 

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