Injuries may be inevitable in elite level athletic competition, so preparation and rapid clear response are the twin pillars of minimizing the consequences of any trauma. Nowehere is this better represented and realized than in the event of a head injury and/or concussion. Marin FC maintains a painstaking head injury protocol as outlined below.
While not all our competition occurs in California, Marin FC takes its standard in accordance with California Assembly Bill No. 379, Chapter 174 which reads (in part):
An athlete who is suspected of sustaining a concussion or other head injury, or who has passed out or fainted, in an athletic activity shall be immediately removed from the athletic activity for the remainder of the day, and shall not be permitted to return to any athletic activity until the athlete is evaluated by a licensed healthcare provider. The athlete shall not be permitted to return to athletic activity until the athlete receives written clearance to return to athletic activity from a licensed healthcare provider. If the licensed healthcare provider determines that the athlete sustained a concussion or other head injury, the athlete shall also complete a graduated return-to-play protocol of no less than seven days in duration under the supervision of a licensed healthcare provider.
On a yearly basis, the youth sports organization shall offer concussion and head injury ... education ... to each coach, administrator, and referee, umpire, or other game official of the youth sports organization.
(Note: Marin FC requires all our coaches annually to pass a concussion and head injury education test. If you are interested, you may take the test yourself here : Marin FC Concussion and Injury Protocol Education)
To Play At All:
No athlete may play, train or even join Marin FC without acknowledging the club's Concussion Protocol requirements which reads:
Any player may be removed from play by a referee, event medical staff or their coach(es) for suspicion of a concussion or other significant injury. A player removed from the field of play for a suspected concussion or other significant injury may not return to training or play until cleared in writing by their medical professional(s). In cases of head injuries, this includes specific "Return to Play" procedures, protocols and milestones as determined applicable by the player's medical provider(s).
An important opportunity for athletes and clubs such as Marin FC to safeguard player health in regards to head injuries and concussions, is baseline testing. In a nutshell, a baseline test measures cognitive normality for a player, aka their baseline. In the event of a head injury, having taken and preserved a baseline test can help medical professionals guide the player in their recovery and return to training or completion.
Baseline testing is not required by law, but often specific leagues will mandate testing. If, when playing for Marin FC, a player is subject to any such mandate, the club will notify the player and player's family, arrange for a test, and cover the cost of testing.
Marin FC also offers baseline testing through our affiliates (see below) for any player wishing to perform a test. Marin FC will pay for the testing.
ImPact is the industry leader and frequently adopted standard for baseline testing.
The ImPACT test is taken online and the results stored and shared in accordance with HIPPA regulations for medical information. Athletes will need to devote approximately 20 minutes of their time without distractions to the test. The test needs to be taken on a desktop or laptop computer. If this is a problem, contact firstname.lastname@example.org and the club will make arrangements for you to test.
Marin FC has partnered with Player's Health to provide online baseline testing through the ImPACT system.
Request a test below and you will be enrolled in the system through a series of coordinated steps.
As our club is quite decentralized, and baseline testing and results are now held in the virtual realm, Marin FC has Aaron Gil, ATC, CSCS, as our 'TeleMedic'. While Aaron and other certified athletic trainings are often at matches and training fields, they cannot be everywhere all the time. As TeleMedic, Aaron coordinates for the club head injury related information, requirements and tracking.
There are two critical functions for our players, coaches and families to be aware of regarding the TeleMedic. First, if a player wishes to baseline test, they must request a baseline test (see above) in order to recieve testing access and links. Secondly, in the event of a suspected head injury and/or concussion at either training or in competition, Aaron must be notified promptly.
Return To Play:
As stated above, no player removed from training or competition may resume athletic activity without the approval of their medical provider(s). In the event of a diagnosed concussion, recovery and return to play will need to adhere to a 'Return to Play' protocol as determined applicable by the player's medical professional(s).
Any unauthorized return to play may result in suspension or ejection from Marin FC for a player or coach known to have allowed such unauthorized return to play.
Marin FC maintains and can provide outline return to play protocols and procedures based upon US Soccer and other industry standards, upon request. However, such protocols are for informational purposes only and DO NOT substitue the examination and prescriptions of the player's medical professional(s).