Athletes put themselves at higher risk of injury when they are involved in full contact sports. The seriousness of their injuries is not always known until it is too late to help them. The players that are affected may not be aware of the complications until it is too late for them to recover or get help. Diseases and debilitating injuries can lay dormant in the athlete for years with little to no symptoms. Studies in the past ten years have begun uncovering numerous diseases and injuries football players suffer. Athletes and families lives are negatively affected and even ended by terrible injuries that could have been prevented.
Rugby players do not suffer as many concussions as football players because of their body awareness on the field of play, use of safe techniques, and the strict enforcement of safety rules. They are taught to tackle differently and not use their heads as a device to bring down the opponent. Players need to be keen on their body awareness and careful of their position when going into contact. There are rules in rugby to protect the players from being exposed to serious injury. High tackles, dangerous tackles, unnecessary contact, and many other penalties are in place to keep players safe. Chris Bodenner wrote an article for The Atlantic that states, “An equal one is the ‘culture of respect’ that’s one of the game’s foundations and most carefully guarded traditions. Players rarely deliberately hurt one another; when they do, they are banned for months on end.” The culture of respect between rugby players is a known agreement to leave the fighting and differences on the field. It is a rough sport and has a sense of brotherhood for all players, regardless of the team or skill. Safety is of the utmost importance for the referee. When a player commits a dangerous penalty, they are sent off of the field and must stay off for a time range of two to ten minutes. If the official overseeing the match deems the action seriously dangerous, the athlete in the wrong will be suspended anywhere from one week to indefinitely. Participants understand the results of their actions and take extra precaution to keep themselves and their opponents safe.
Naturally, football has a lot of contact and physicality involved. The problem is not the physical nature of it, but the unnecessary and unsafe techniques players use. The basic contact in football is blocking and tackling. Football players risk career-ending, even life-threatening injury every time they slam into an opponent. Even worse, recent studies have shown that injuries to the brain may lie dormant and symptomless for years. Cumulative injuries that could have been prevented if detected in time result in mental illnesses ranging from depression to dementia and even suicide.
Football players can receive “mini” concussions over one-hundred times throughout a game when they slam into an opponent. These mini-concussions are small, unnoticeable concussions are caused by repetitive blows to the head causing the brain to slam into the skull, but without any symptoms of a concussion. Players that are blocking and tackling often have more of these mini-concussions. The complications that come from cumulative mini-concussions do not show up for years. Down the line, a person may begin to have symptoms of dementia, aggression, and personality changes. They will not be aware that they are changing, but their family will notice. This is CTE. CTE is caused by repetitive head trauma that cumulates and slowly destroys the brain. It may not show any symptoms for ten or more years. Doctors have no real cure for CTE, and it can result in life-ending consequences.
Elite level football athletes are more likely to end up with horrific complications from concussions compared to any other elite level athlete. For example, NFL players, like Junior Seau, have taken their own lives because of CTE complications. Junior Seau was a linebacker in the NFL that was recognized for his passionate play and was inducted into the Hall of Fame. He received countless blows to the head throughout his football career and was found to have suffered CTE. CTE does not show a person’s true emotions and personality, but it distorts their thinking and turns them into someone they never would have become. According to Mary Pilon and Ken Benson, “Researchers at Boston University, who pioneered the study of C.T.E., have found it in 33 of the 34 brains of former N.F.L. players they have examined.” The disease can only be identified after death with the close eye of a trained doctor and a microscope. The NFL has turned a blind eye for too long and left these traumatic injuries and complications to the wayside. The techniques used in football must change, or future and current players will follow the footsteps of those that suffered before them.
People that participate in football and other high-impact sports are accepting of life-changing injuries when they agree to play the sport, but they do not expect it to be life ending. Football players are padded, and they do not receive as much of an immediate effect from high-impact head injuries. The small amount of pain or “ringing” is brushed off as a good hit. The player then goes on to receive countless of these impacts which eventually manifest into permanent brain damage and at the worst, CTE. Football fans and players can be ignorant of the facts, but outsiders do not desire to stop them from participating. The conversation about football and life-altering injuries only pushes to make it safer, not eliminate it.
When good techniques are used, it is not always good enough. Bringing down an opponent at full speed is not easy and can be extremely unsafe. Rugby players also receive head injuries, but it happens less than football players. The pure inertia of stopping someone running full speed can compress the spine and cause havoc on the skull. The symptoms are not always immediate but can cause future, unforeseen complications. Overall, contact sports display numerous possible injuries, and the players are not always able to avoid them. The decisions players make on the field, and the techniques they employ are a deciding factor in most injuries. No athlete is safe, but every athlete should think about themselves and their health before pushing too far and engaging in dangerous play.
Pilon, M., & Belson, K. (2013, January 10). Seau Suffered From Brain Disease. Retrieved April 1, 2018, from https://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/11/sports/football/junior-seau-suffered-from-brain-disease.html
Bodenner, C. (2016, October 14). Which Is More Dangerous, Rugby or Football? Retrieved April 1, 2018, from https://www.theatlantic.com/notes/2016/10/rugby/504143/
6 thoughts on “Causal rewrite- jdormann”
JD, I like the simplicity and clarity of your opening sentences. Your claims are straightforward and, for the most part, simply and cleanly expressed. But before I move on to the rest of your essay, let’s examine this one paragraph more closely for opportunities.
FIRST THE GRAMMAR PROBLEMS
AFFECT/EFFECT. You’ve made two mistakes of this type. Remember, “to affect” is the verb; “one effect” is the noun; “effective” is the adjective. Our own FFG Rule 9. https://rowancounterintuitive.com/syllabus/fails-for-grammar-ffg/
LIE/LAY. This one is tricky because, even if you know the difference in the present tense, the past tense is ambiguous. But yours is wrong. https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/605/02/
POSSESSIVES. Our own FFG Rule 13. https://rowancounterintuitive.com/syllabus/fails-for-grammar-ffg/ . Here you want the possessive for “the lives of athletes” and “the lives of families.”
Now, for some style enhancements:
REDUCE WORDINESS AND AMBIGUITY
—You say “when they are involved in full contact sports,” when what you mean is “when they play full contact sports.” Coaches are “involved in” full contact sports. So are sportswriters, cheerleaders, and equipment managers. But it’s the athletes who “play” that risk injury.
—You say “put themselves at higher risk of injury” when you mean “risk injury.” You don’t appear to be comparing two activities, so the “higher risk” has nothing to be compared to. To “put yourself at a high risk of injury” is to “risk injury.”
—You spend two sentences on “injuries are unknown too long” and “injuries show no symptoms for years.” You should be able to combine those two statements into a powerful cause/effect claim.
—Those unknown injuries and diseases, late in your paragraph, become connected for the first time to football players.
—Let’s do it early, and name those ailments, so readers know what’s at stake immediately.
—Your final sentence closes a logical loop by connecting “could have been prevented” with “too late to help” and “too late to recover or get help.”
1. Notice that we have named football immediately.
2. We also connected the vague notion of “injury” to impact collisions.
3. We named the brain as the site of those dormant injuries.
4. And we clarified that the injuries are cumulative: they could have been prevented if the player had known it was time to quit the sport.
5. And we named some of the outcomes.
In every sentence, we’ve eliminated vague language like: “numerous diseases and illnesses,” “lives are negatively affected,” and “players that are affected.”
Of course, you must correct the obvious grammar and punctuation errors when you find them. I highly recommend enlisting a skilled proofreader to show you the problems, not just fix them. But take the opportunity to examine your work for vagueness. Eliminate extraneous language. Replace ambiguity with clear, specific, vivid words.
Is that helpful, or just annoying at this stage of the semester?
I appreciate feedback too!
Thank you for the feedback. I will work to correct my grammar and limit the unnecessary word use in this piece.
Your second paragraph combines two excellent and essential claims.
1. Rugby players tackle to avoid injury.
2. Rugby as an organization strictly enforces safe play.
These are related, but each deserves a paragraph.
THE RUGBY TACKLE
Here’s what you say about it:
I get the sense you’re afraid there isn’t enough to say about this item and are repeating yourself as a result. Distilled to their essence, your observations boil down to this:
What’s missing here, and what readers like me would appreciate, is a description of the quintessential “rugby tackle.” If it can be trained, it can be described. Helping readers understand how it differs from tackles made in the NFL is essential to your argument. We presume you’re going to recommend that football adopt rugby tackling practice as a way to reduce concussions. So, what’s it look like?
THE RUGBY ETHOS
The rest of your paragraph deserves its own space to develop. Your “culture of respect” argument is brilliant and powerful. You don’t do much to CONTRAST it with NFL protocols, but you could (perhaps should). The NFL does enforce “unnecessary roughness” penalties. Does it suspend for overly hard or dangerous hits? Did it begin to do so IN REACTION TO player grievances about CTE? The more you can distinguish the ETHOS conflicts of rugby and football, the better you can lay blame on the NFL for advocating (or at least condoning) overtly dangerous violence.
Single Quotes inside Double Quotes.
Our own FFG Rule 9. https://rowancounterintuitive.com/syllabus/fails-for-grammar-ffg/
“An equal one is the ‘culture of respect’ that’s one of the game’s foundations and most carefully guarded traditions. Players rarely deliberately hurt one another; when they do, they are banned for months on end.”
The one use for single quotes in American English is to bracket quotable material inside a set of double quotes. Your revised quotation above shows proper punctuation.
Let me say before I distress you, JD, this is a fine paper overall. You’re handling a good bit of material effectively and showing good judgment. You’re taking the job seriously. I find myself nodding in agreement.
But I feel compelled by my job and a need to be helpful to offer more advice than you might want. Let me know if it’s time to stop.
Thank you for the feedback. I feel that this paper has been revised enough. The writing process and revision is never over, but it is time to move on to other coursework.
Duly noted. I applaud you for the work you’ve done.
[Is this the first time you’ve had to tell your writing professor, “Please. No more feedback!”?]