Local panelists discuss danger of concussions for young athletes and prevention steps

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - Football is without question a contact sport.  It can be hard to escape the game without a collision.

It's now a factor that has many parents questioning whether to let their own child suit up.   Monday afternoon in Huntsville, a panel discussed sports head injuries following a viewing of the movie "Concussion" starring Will Smith.  The panel was held at Regal Hollywood.

The movie focuses on the research surrounding brain damage in professional football players.

The panelists included local coaches, athletic trainers and retired NFL player Rashad Moore.  All explained the ongoing efforts involved in keeping athletes safe.

"You're taught to keep your head up, and in a lot of times, in the interior line, play with your hands. So if you play the game the way you're taught to play the game I don't think concussions or head trauma should be something you're worried about," said Moore.

Ray Greene, former AAMU head football coach, also served on the panel.

"It's not a one time hit, it's usually practice time. So the city is cutting down on the hours of practice that a young person can practice during the week," said Greene, who is now Youth Services Director for the City of Huntsville. "They're talking about how to tackle."

Players and coaches alike say player safety should be a priority during a game.