There has been a lot of emphasis recently on identifying and treating concussion in sports in an attempt to limit the lasting damage to the brain when a player sustains a head injury.
The dangers of suffering concussion are now being fully realised and more measures are being introduced to ensure players can properly recover from one.
Cheltenham Town’s George Lloyd has suffered two concussions this season and admitted it has been a real challenge for him.
He said: “It’s been difficult. For the first few days I wasn’t feeling great but then I wasn’t allowed to play any football or any exercise for two weeks.
“It was frustrating, especially when I got my first one against Scunthorpe. It was my sixth game on the trot playing which hadn’t happened before and I felt like I was playing well and it was definitely a down moment.
Lloyd sustained his first concussion against Scunthorpe on February 27th and had to spend two weeks without exercising in order to properly see out the correct safety protocols.
But, the 21 year old took another blow to the head on his return against Exeter City on March 13, suffering another concussion which ruled him out of action for yet another fortnight.
Due to the lack of exercise imposed upon him Lloyd said that maintaining fitness was close to impossible.
“The one thing it does set you back on is fitness because you’re not allowed to do anything. 14 days and no exercise. Then I have a five day return to play period which includes a 20 minute cycle which isn’t hard and then you move onto the football stuff,” he said.
“I think I ended up training properly twice after my concussion so you can’t really do any proper fitness work because of the protocol.”
There has been much discussion amongst the footballing world as to the potential dangers of heading the ball and the increased chances of being concussed from it but also of developing early-onset dementia.
While Lloyd appreciates the dangers, he sees heading as as part of the game and said it won’t put him off from getting stuck in in the future.
“It’s my job at the end of the day and I have to put my head in where it hurts. I’ve done it a lot this season and I’ve had a lot of joy from it. It got me the goal against Crewe. I’ve got to do it.
“I’ve got no worries coming back. I think I just got very unlucky.”