As a White Rock Chiropractor I have noticed that there is no other game in Canada that creates so many political issues as hockey. The game is exciting, rewarding, aggravating and has parents “duking” it out in the stands. More importantly it has young children at high exposure from reality seriously hurt. What I am talking about is a recent diagnosis near the Canadian Hockey Association to lift a ban on full company contact in children’s hockey leagues.
This is a highly contentious issue that has been in the press recently. It is a bad decision by those that run the league to upgrade a twenty year curse on body checking for young players. Allowing body checking for players as young as nine years sounds nice strange to me! In South Surrey, we see lots of back pain related to hockey amongst the younger players.
Those that run the Canadian Hockey Association decided to do (or have accomplished for them) some “unbiased” probe to prove that in young children the ominous about injury did not go up between hockey unless core checking and hockey with body checking. The CHA presented this therefore being the case. Unfortunately their data was biased. The truth is that injuries went up four times when body checking was introduced.
Children at nine and ten are just starting to prime in bone formation, joint formation and ligament growth. Actually, this process does not positively get going until puberty. It will not stop until the child entirely matures which could be sixteen to eighteen years of age. A child at the 9, 10 or 11 could have cram and joint sabotage that could affect growth and body stability, having lifelong effects.
I talked about athletics and children in before articles before. Body contact or even the act of non contacting sport can have enormous influence on abnormal growth of bones and joints. Tearing of ligaments that hold joints together is not as uncommon as we used to think. This also has permanent effects on the function from the joints. All this can lead to degenerative wear and tear throughout the individual’s life. This receptacle then precede to osteoarthritis.
As a White Rock Chiropractor, I opine that body checking shouldn’t be allowed until at least 16 when the teen has maturity in bones and joints along with muscular strength also hockey skill. Some of you will disagree believing that players should be proficient to check at a younger age or that they should not be able to check at all along minor, elementary hockey. Whatever your opinion, it indeed makes no rationality from a physical health perspective to allow it in the greatly young athletes. We need to avoid the back pain we ascertain in South Surrey and other cities related to hockey injuries.