English players limited to ten « higher strength » heads per week in training

“It is recommended to perform a maximum of ten heads of higher strength in a week of training. This recommendation is provided to protect the welfare of players and will be reviewed regularly as further research is undertaken ”, the Football Association (FA), the Premier League and the English Football League (EFL) said in a joint statement. All players, professionals and amateurs alike, are affected by the recommendation.

The move was prompted by the recent publication of studies on the long-term dangers of repeated strong head shots by footballers. Repeating the gesture at too high a frequency would expose players and players to brain damage and make them more likely to develop neurodegenerative diseases.

Advice will be sent to clubs

A “superior force” header is considered as such if it occurs after a long pass (over 35m) or a cross, corner or free kick. Advice will be sent to clubs on training practices to develop to work on the head technique using less force.

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