Danger Danger

By Tyler Gutwein, Staff

We like to think that sporting events are fairly safe contests with chances of injury being minimized through equipment and technique. However, that doesn’t mean that these events come without major risk factors. These risks are a lot to take on and are not for the faint of heart. Sports take blood, sweat, and tears and sometimes even major injury. Many parents are asking if these risks are worth the price. 

Not all injuries are severe, a lot of them being small, like a pulled muscle or a pinched nerve. However, with all the small injuries, there are always career threatening and sometimes even life- threatening injuries that can linger around the corner. 

Concussions have become fairly common in sporting events. Whether this is down more to reporting of the injuries or the bigger, or a more physical nature of the games they play is anyone’s guess. Multiple concussions and even many small hits to the head over and over can cause a condition called Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE). Linemen in football tend to have CTE more often because of them hitting each other every play. As a lineman, I am well aware of the risks, but that doesn’t deter me. A lot of what modern day coaches teach is how to keep your head out of contact and though it is difficult to prevent every hit to the head, the points help. 

Motorsport has some of the toughest people in any sport. In NASCAR, the inside of the car can get well over 100 degrees, which can cause a driver to pass out due to heat exhaustion. This can cause massive wrecks. Single seaters put a lot of the force onto the neck of a driver, causing a sore and possible neck and back problems later in life. However, because of the high speeds they travel, major accidents occur, sometimes resulting in the paralyzation or even death of the drivers. In 1999, Formula 1 legend Michael Schumacher broke his leg when his brakes failed and he slammed into a wall. In 1994, Ayrton Senna went into a corner when the car bottomed out, causing him to lose control of the car and he slammed into the wall, he was later pronounced dead at the hospital. And most recently this year, Anthoine Hubert in Formula 2 was killed in a wreck while trying to avoid another one at the Belgium Grand Prix. I still believe that safety measures are always improving for these drivers and normally it’s crazy and unpredictable circumstances that cause a driver to be in harm’s way.  

Swimming is suprisingly a very dangerous sport. There are risks of drowning, but it isn’t thought of as a major danger to anyone. That’s because when we think of swimming, we think of Olympic swimming in a swimming pool. However, many people swim in the sea. Currents can pull people out at sea where they may die from exhaustion and drown. Bones breaking on rocks or other items in the ocean can occur making it difficult to swim back to shore and leading to an infection. 

Sports may have risks that endanger my safety, but I will play sports for as long as I can. Sports keep many people healthy and active. It is important to know about the consequences of the games you play and as long as you can accept the risks of the sport it is worth it.