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Safer Soccer Campaign


Safer Soccer mission: To educate parents, coaches, and soccer stakeholders on the benefits of delaying the introduction of headers in youth soccer until high school/age 14.

Safer Soccer goal: By 2017, youth soccer organizations do not teach or allow heading in soccer for children.

Fast facts:

  • Attempting to head the ball and colliding or falling is by far the #1 risk of concussions in youth soccer, causing more than 30,000 concussions each year.
  • Heading accounts for nearly 1/3 of concussions in youth soccer.
  • Safer Soccer has widespread support among U.S. Soccer legends, who believe that this safety measure will also create more skilled players.

  • Read the White Paper Read the Press Release


    You can share your support for Safer Soccer on social media using the hashtag #NoHeaderNoBrainer. We’ve also started a participatory campaign where supporters are reversing their jerseys and posting photos and videos tagged with #NoHeaderNoBrainer until the youth heading rule is reversed. Want to join in? Learn how here.

    In the News

    Safer Soccer Video Content

    List of Supporters The Shipley School
    Riverdale Country School
    Arlington Public Middle Schools (VA)
    Former soccer player and World Cup Champion Brandi Chastain
    Former soccer player and World Cup Champion Cindy Parlow Cone
    Former soccer player and World Cup Champion Joy Fawcett
    Former soccer player and World Cup Champion Julie Foudy
    Former soccer player and World Cup Champion Kristine Lilly
    Former Women's National Team Coach and World Cup Champion Tony DiCicco
    Former Major League Soccer Player Doug Warren
    Former Major League Soccer Player Steve Jolley
    Former pro soccer player Ronnie Pascale
    Robert Cantu, MD – SLI Medical Director, Prof. of Neurosurgery, Boston University
    Rhoda Au, PhD, Professor of Neurology, Boston University School of Medicine
    Laura Balcer, MD – Vice-Chair of the Dept. of Neurology, NYU Langone Medical Center
    Jeffrey T. Barth, PhD – Prof., Director, Brain Injury and Sports Concussion Institute University of Virginia, School of Medicine
    Jill Brooks, PhD – Clinical Neuropsychologist, Head to Head Consultants
    Kevin Crutchfield, MD - Director, Comprehensive Concussion Program, LifeBridge Health
    David Dodick, MD – Neurologist, Director, Concussion & Headache Programs, Mayo Clinic
    Steve Galetta, MD – Chair of the Dept. of Neurology, NYU Langone Medical Center
    Dorothy Kozlowski, PhD – Prof., Dept. of Biological Sciences, DePaul University; President, Chicago Society for Neuroscience
    Leonard V. Messner, OD – Prof. and Vice President for Patient Care Services, Illinois College of Optometry
    Jeff Mjaanes, MD – Director of Chicago Sports Concussion Clinic at Rush
    Carl Nissen, MD – Prof., UConn School of Medicine, Connecticut Children's Medical Center
    Willie Stewart, MD – Neuropathologist, South Glasgow University Hospital, Glasgow, Scotland

    Become a Safer Soccer Supporter

    We invite youth soccer organizations to pledge to prohibit heading under high school by contacting Tyler Maland at tmaland@sportslegacy.org or (781) 790-1921 ext. 103. Your organization's name will then be listed on our website. The goal is universal participation so that no team has a competitive advantage based on putting child athletes at risk! You can also support the campaign by donating today.