A Guide to Concussion Awareness for Mini Rugby Parents and Players

This season Instonians is promoting the IRFU Education Initiative on Concussion in Rugby. The Campaign is entitled STOP INFORM REST RETURN. For more information on this and links to other websites please read on.


Welcome back to the new season at Seahorse Mini Rugby. We hope everyone had a wonderful summer and all are settled back into the school routines and the rugby season too. This season as in previous seasons we will be highlighting information to you as parents that we feel is important and will hopefully provide added value to you and your son’s experiences at Instonians RFC. Previous recurring initiatives will be revisited such as Bullying Awareness and Strategies. On line and social media awareness and safety for children will also be a topic this year that we intend to offer information on such has signposting other resources etc.


Our first topic is Concussion in Rugby and we aim to raise awareness not just to you as parents but also to our young players and promote the importance of being honest about symptoms that they may have if involved in a heavy tackle or other impact. We are not out to alarm but the IRFU and Ulster Branch have put a big emphasis on getting the message out about Concussion, what it is and what to do. The Campaign that we are disseminating is STOP INFORM REST RETURN. The link in this article provides full details about this Initiative. In addition the other link will direct you to more information on the issue of concussion through simple to watch videos aimed at coaches, parents and young players. We would encourage you to take the time to watch the video with your child to help get the message through that is important to speak up when you are not feeling right after a tackle or other impact no matter how innocent it may have been.


So what can you expect from Instonians RFC as part of our commitment to our Seahorse players welfare.


1.       All Year groups have coaches that have done the Concussion Recognition Modules from the IRB website and received Certificates to confirm this.


2.       Should there be a concern for any player as a result of something that happens on the pitch, concussion will be screened for as part of the immediate player support. The player shall be removed from the field of play immediately and assessed. If concussion is suspected or confirmed in the assessment of the coach, this will form the basis of the follow up actions which are explained in the Concussion guide below.


3.       As a parent you will be provided with this information including what and why an assessment has been made, directly as soon as is practicable after the event if you are not present for training. We will have a Coach remain with the player until he is handed over to you as a parent or other family member looking after him.


4.       You will be advised that the Club will be required to fill in a short concussion report that is sent to the Ulster Branch as part of their concussion monitoring programme. We will give you a copy of it as it will only be a collation of the facts that you have already been advised of.


5.       The Children’s Safeguarding Officer will personally follow up on your son’s wellbeing within 36 hrs of the incident occurring.


As a Club we take concussion and its management seriously particularly for our youngest players. Whilst a concussion can occur in any environment at any time as a result of an accident or incident we can only advise you of what our clearly adopted Policy is on our pitches which is underpinned by clearly directed Procedures from our Governing body. Given the number of players, the amount of playing time and the number of concussions that are reported currently, it is more likely that a concussion incident will not happen to a player in the course of their time at Instonians but if it does we would like to assure you of our responses as detailed above. We hope you can talk openly to your son about this issue through the age appropriate support materials provided on the Ulster Branch Website (links below) as this will encourage them to always tell the truth about how they are feeling if the need to assess a potential concussion ever arises.


We hope you have found this useful. Please feel free to contact the Children’s Safeguarding Officer, your Lead Coach or the Convenor about any further questions you might have.


We hope you and your son enjoy another great season at Seahorses Mini Rugby here at Instonians RFC.


For further information follow the links below.