Rugby Nova Scotia says security key focus as it manages high school season | CKPG today | Prince George, Northern BC

Rugby Nova Scotia says security key focus as it manages high school season | CKPG today | Prince George, Northern BC

"The important thing is that players had the opportunity to get back on track," Hanratty said in an interview Friday. "We have achieved that goal, so now we will continue to try to make the game safer."

With about three games left on held schedules before the season ends on June 1 weekend, Hanratty said his organization emphasizes a renewed focus on security with coaches, players and officials.

Already, he helped run a tackle security clinic on Wednesday at the request of a high school executive in Cape Breton.

Hanratty said where his organization could previously suggest what direction rugby could take in high school, it now has an immediate influence.

"We have always offered these tackle workshops, but I think we are a little bit more in the front line, so it seems we have a bit more interest in being present," he said.

Nova Scotias Education Department has said it will work this summer to review sports safety issues, including rugby, with medical experts, federation and Rugby Nova Scotia.

Hanratty said his organization could influence the structure of the high school, including the number of games and competitive balance between teams.

He said there is also the possibility of introducing training rules for things like safe and proper tackling. It is particularly important that Hanratty added that new players will be required to take an introduction to contact session run by qualified instructors.

"We would like to mandate some of these sessions," he said. "So if you're a new player, be sure to come down and make one of those tackling sessions."

Although rugby is still covered by the province's school insurance program, it is no longer sanctioned by athletic federation. Hanratty said it is hoped that Rugby Nova Scotia can work with the union to manage the sport next year.

The League has expressed confidence in the Rugby Nova Scotias' oversight for the rest of the season, but it has stopped to say that the sport will be permanently reintroduced.

In its first decision, the federal board referred incident report data from the school insurance program, indicating that there were three times more insurance claims due to rugby than from football, football and hockey over a five-year period.

The same numbers indicate that rugby players were five times more likely to suffer head injuries.

Rugby Canada and some doctors, however, pointed out that the level of injury reporting in rugby is higher because it has been prioritized through the sport's Play Smart program.

Rugby Canada also said there is an abundance of global data showing rugby behind football, football and equestrian sports in the form of catastrophic injuries.

Keith Doucette, The Canadian Press

Leave a comment

Send a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.