OLLU conducts baseline concussion testing for all 250 athletes
OLLU has had much success in intercollegiate athletics since its inaugural season in 2007. The success, however, would not have been possible if the University did not place the safety of its athletes as a priority. This is why OLLU has instituted baseline concussion testing for all 250 of its intercollegiate athletes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an estimated 300,000 sports-related brain injuries occur annually in the United States. Within a season, an average 5-10 percent of athletes will endure a concussion, no matter their sport. A concussion may occur when a moving object strikes the head or when the head hits an object. A concussion is classified as a minor traumatic brain injury. MRI and CT scans are used to identify serious brain injuries, but they have proven to be ineffective when trying to identify the functional effects of a concussion. According to OLLU’s Head Athletic Trainer Corey Beechner, “A concussion is an invisible injury.” At the beginning of the 2014 school year, OLLU decided to incorporate ImPACT testing into the athletics program. ImPACT (Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment Cognitive Testing) is a computer-based program that runs a series of tests on athletes to acquire a baseline, with the baseline being the normal cognitive function of an athlete before injury. The results from the baseline testing are stored and will be used to evaluate the athlete and determine if they are ready to return to their sport after an injury. Read full story online.