KSL TV/File

New rules for high school student athletes

By Paul Nelson  |  Posted Aug 4th, 2014 @ 9:13am


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SALT LAKE CITY — The rules are changing when it comes to whether high schoolers can play sports this year. The Utah High School Activities Association has updated their requirements for student athletes.

When it comes to the health of students, officials with the Utah High School Activities Association are most concerned about three things, namely, heart health, concussion prevention and history of heat illnesses. They’re asking parents and doctors to help them keep a close eye on those things.

“We know that these are three big things that make them more susceptible (to problems), currently and in the future. So, the physician that performs this pre-participation exam, or physical, really needs to concentrate in those areas,” according to Lisa Walker, who sits on the Sports Medicine Advisory Council of the Utah High School Activities Association.

It used to be that a student-athlete had to have a physical every three years, and the parents could sign waivers in those off years. The UHSAA has changed that. “Every athlete is now required to have a new physical, annually.”

She also says schools need to plan for bad weather. “There has got to be a plan for lightning or for inclement weather prior to any competition.”

They’ve also modified how often coaches need to be certified in CPR and first aid.

Walker says, “How it used to be was that every coach had to, initially, be CPR and first aid certified, but, once it lapsed, they didn’t have to be current.”

Now, coaches have to be current on their certification every year by a recognized organization, like the Red Cross.

You can see a complete copy of the 2014-15 UHSAA handbook here.

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