Diane Wiese-Bjornstal, Ph.D., associate director and professor in the School of Kinesiology, and Nicole M. LaVoi, Ph.D., senior lecturer in the School of Kinesiology, participated in the Ice Hockey Summit III and co-authored an article with Dr. Aynsley Smith, (lead author), a Ph.D. alum and former affiliated School of Kinesiology graduate faculty member, now associate professor of orthopedics, physical medicine and rehabilitation at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. The article, titled “Proceedings from the Ice Hockey Summit III, Action on Concussion,” was published in Current Sports Medicine Reports and examines the updated scientific evidence on concussions in hockey to inform five objectives:
- Describe sport-related concussion (SRC) epidemiology
- Classify prevention strategies
- Define objective, diagnostic tests
- Identify treatment
- Integrate science and clinical care into prioritized action plans and policy
The published action plan evolved from 40 scientific presentations that took place at the Ice Hockey Summit III, and priorities were voted on by the 155 attendees, which included physicians, athletic trainers, physical therapists, nurses, neuropsychologists, scientists, engineers, coaches, and officials.
- Establish a national and international hockey database for SRC at all levels
- Eliminate body checking in Bantam youth hockey games
- Expand a behavior modification program (Fair Play) to all youth hockey levels
- Enforce game ejection penalties for fighting in Junior A and professional hockey leagues
- Establish objective tests to diagnose concussion at point of care (POC)
- Mandate baseline testing to improve concussion diagnosis for all age groups.
The publication concludes that expedient implementation of the above action items, prioritized at the Summit III, is necessary to reduce the risk, severity, and consequences of concussions in the sport of ice hockey.