Last month BMX Australia adopted a concussion policy that put the wellbeing of athletes at the forefront of thought, bringing the sport into line with other major sporting codes that also have management plans of…
Last month BMX Australia adopted a concussion policy that put the wellbeing of athletes at the forefront of thought, bringing the sport into line with other major sporting codes that also have management plans of concussion and head trauma in place.
The premise of the BMXA concussion policy is to provide athletes, coaches, team managers, officials and others responding to athletes who incur a head injury with a code of best practice. The guidelines are general in nature and are not intended to replace medical assessment and treatment.
A major component of the concussion policy is a ‘remove from play’ rule, which sets out that any rider with a suspected concussion will be immediately removed from competition, coaching and officiating duties, if they have them. That rider will not be permitted to return until an assessment by a qualified medical practitioner is performed.
In the weeks since the announcement of the policy BMXA has created processing advice surrounding the ‘remove from play’ rule for clubs to follow.
Chief among the processing advice is the need for clubs to complete the BMX Accident Report form following any incidents, and tick the ‘concussion’ box. Clubs then follow normal accident procedures, without any further action needed.
Upon receipt of an accident report that lists concussion, BMXA will record that rider as being medically suspended for a period of 12 months and notify the rider, their club and state association. However once a medical certificate is submitted this suspension will be lifted.
The rationale behind a 12-month suspension is to encourage riders to submit their medical clearance in a timely manner.
During a medical suspension a rider will not be able to enter into events, nor will they be allowed to compete in events as club or event organisers will have access to the list of medically suspended riders.