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Experts urge schools to ban tackling in rugby

Posted by SchoolDays Newshound on 03/03/2016. Experts urge schools to ban tackling in rugbyTags: Parenting Education And Politics

Over 70 doctors and academics are calling for a ban on tackling in rugby matches played in Irish and UK schools. The group have written to the Minister for Sport, the Chief Medical Officer, and the Children's Ombudsman in Ireland calling for a ban on tackling in school rugby games.

In an open letter (see below), they say injuries from this "high-impact collision sport" can have lifelong consequences for children and they argue two thirds of injuries in youth rugby and most concussions are down to tackles and urge schools to move to touch and non-contact rugby.

The letter goes on to say that "As a signatory to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, the UK and Irish governments should ensure the safety of rugby, by removing the contact from the children's game in schools."

In a response to the petition calling for a ban on tackling at underage levels, the IRFU said in a statement that it believes that the "lifelong health and personal benefits of rugby, and other contact sports, far outweigh the risks.

It goes on to say “research has shown that rugby is no riskier for children to play than other sports - there is no difference between reported injury rates in rugby, football, indoor football and rugby league at under-12 level. The number one cause of injury for children is unsupervised activity or playing, not sports, while sport itself only accounts for one in six head injury admissions to hospital.”

What do you think - should there be a ban on tackling in schools' rugby? Add your comments below


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