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The Risks and Rewards of Football

Do the dangers of football stop you from letting your kids play?

"This is the greatest game in the world, I think it teaches more values than any other game that you play. You have things that happen in your life that aren't going to be good. If you play football, you know how to handle them. It doesn't necessarily equate in track and other things." Bruce Arians - coach of the Arizona Cardinals (via ESPN)

Football as we know is a dangerous sport. Some would even call it violent, and from the first glimpse of it I would agree. As I first grabbed my helmet and headed on the field, with my Eddie George jersey over my pads instead of the required Arlington jersey, which was draped over my head. I was exited, I was nervous, but WAY more exited.

I learned quickly that in this sport I had to pay attention or I would get knocked over. What I've learned from football could only be matched from what I learned in my EMT training courses: the most important lesson was team. In football you individually have a certain job and that job may not be as important as other jobs or as hard. But if you do your job you can help others do theirs. I was co-captain senior year and junior year before I got injured. As captain, my job was to help everyone else on the field and in my life, that is what I do.

Football made me become a man, I have lifelong injuries from it, but I still would have played knowing all of the dangers. That's a large part of what football is, facing your fears head on and not running away from them.

I feel that the world we live in, at times, can be more dangerous than the game of football. Playing football is a choice. There are other ways to learn these things, but that is how I did. I'm not saying that football is the best educational experience anyone could have. I'm saying to do your research, weigh the pros and cons, and decide for yourself if football is worth the physical risks.