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Tackle height law change confirmed


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16 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

Obviously as we have seen from this and other posts that Tommy has made the game has only been started playing properly in his lifetime, about 25 years and so only probably less than 20years in his experience.

But can I just throw a spanner in the works of your comment above, years ago, we didn't have substitutes, so players had to play long minutes about 80, there were proper contested scrums which had many head clashes - usually on purpose when the packs were coming together, there were unlimited tackles and most of it forward contact - which the 'culmative minute' brigade recognise as the players most at risk, and fatigue factor is so very much reduced these days with the army of interchanges at a coaches disposal.

What time duration or the length of a game would you suggest john?

I wasn't really being serious rather I guess implying given the focus on the risk I wondered why they weren't considering such things as game length as distinct from length of time for players or games allowed to play, etc... Plus of course as per your paragraph of past periods why not looking at some of those area's, especially interchanges and their impact of having big players come on for short periods full of energy to impact others.   

I guess I was being somewhat sarcastic that they aren't looking at the whole game.

Anyway I'm in the camp of seeing how the game adapts and plays out on the pitch and whether it will remain a sport I want to watch.  Having said that I remember not thinking that the changes to soccer in cleaning up the game from those shall we say nastier tackling players would be a game I would like to watch.  As it turned out soccer is a much more attractive game to watch today and hopefully that happens to RL.

60mins with longer half time breaks... for those bands at Leigh to get more time to entertain...

 

 

Edited by redjonn
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11 hours ago, EagleEyePie said:

This thread is very informative. It's a shame that Twitter (no, I'll never call it 'X') isn't the best for presenting this information and it would be useful if it could be expanded into an article to properly explain these points without a character limit.

Also doesn't gloss over the fact that, while the highest instance of concussion is obviously ball carriers being tackled around the head, the second biggest risk is defenders tackling around the hip area, and that low tackles carry twice the concussion risk of tackling between shoulder and abdomen.

The part of the data I would like to see expanded is what proportion of the concussive incidents for the ball carrier in zone 1 (head/neck) were from contact between the tacklers arm/shoulder to the head of the ball carrier and what proportion were from head clashes.

"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

"If someone doesn't value evidence, what evidence are you going to provide to prove that they should value it? If someone doesn't value logic, what logical argument could you provide to show the importance of logic?" — Sam Harris

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9 minutes ago, Dunbar said:

The part of the data I would like to see expanded is what proportion of the concussive incidents for the ball carrier in zone 1 (head/neck) were from contact between the tacklers arm/shoulder to the head of the ball carrier and what proportion were from head clashes.

Delving to deep Dunny, I wouldn't think that suits their narrative.

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Just now, Harry Stottle said:

Delving to deep Dunny, I wouldn't think that suits their narrative.

Everything is conspiracy.

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Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life. (Terry Pratchett)

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I haven’t been giving this topic much thought. In a sport which it is illegal to tackle above the shoulders, I frankly disagree with these measures which detract from the physical abilities of the game.

Finally giving it some thought, it has only really just occurred to me that more concussions in the pro game could well be suffered by the tackler rather than the ball carrier. If not more, then certainly a good proportion. What happens when we keep directing tacklers to tackle lower and in turn place the tackler’s head in a compromising position against the full force of a player running towards them? I think there is an argument that enforcing lower tacking will only lead to more concussions.

This is a physical sport. Those who admire it, mostly admire the physical aspect. Those who play it, mostly admire the physical aspect. The game will never be popular with everyone and will never be truly safe. I fear the tackle below the arm pit rule and the pressure it will place on officials and the subsequent detrimental effect it will have on the aesthetics of a match will only serve to turn lots of fans away, whilst gaining the popularity of few if any.

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1 hour ago, redjonn said:

Taking on your throw away comment regards reducing number of players...

Given the more time playing the higher the risk... would not an option be to reduce the length of a game, particularly given that the more more tired/exhausted a player is the more likely the risk increases....

I'd have thought that the reverse, a short, hyper physical contest would be more dangerous.

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1 hour ago, Dunbar said:

The part of the data I would like to see expanded is what proportion of the concussive incidents for the ball carrier in zone 1 (head/neck) were from contact between the tacklers arm/shoulder to the head of the ball carrier and what proportion were from head clashes.

Is the data published? I'd be surprised if a serious study took place without recording the nature of the clashes (as well as the spread of rates of acceleration). I'd be interested to see the breakdown also. I suppose the arguments about making the tackler bend his back should decrease the likelihood of a head clash with the ball carrier but may increase the likelihood of head clash with fellow tacklers? I wonder which statistic will prove to be more prevalent when the rules change. If there are more head clashes with team mates as a result of the change, then there's an argument to revert to things as they are.

 

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52 minutes ago, Sports Prophet said:

I haven’t been giving this topic much thought. In a sport which it is illegal to tackle above the shoulders, I frankly disagree with these measures which detract from the physical abilities of the game.

Finally giving it some thought, it has only really just occurred to me that more concussions in the pro game could well be suffered by the tackler rather than the ball carrier. If not more, then certainly a good proportion. What happens when we keep directing tacklers to tackle lower and in turn place the tackler’s head in a compromising position against the full force of a player running towards them? I think there is an argument that enforcing lower tacking will only lead to more concussions.

This is a physical sport. Those who admire it, mostly admire the physical aspect. Those who play it, mostly admire the physical aspect. The game will never be popular with everyone and will never be truly safe. I fear the tackle below the arm pit rule and the pressure it will place on officials and the subsequent detrimental effect it will have on the aesthetics of a match will only serve to turn lots of fans away, whilst gaining the popularity of few if any.

How is boxing escaping this kind of scrutiny? And especially the animalistic octogon? 

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18 minutes ago, fighting irish said:

Is the data published? I'd be surprised if a serious study took place without recording the nature of the clashes (as well as the spread of rates of acceleration). I'd be interested to see the breakdown also. I suppose the arguments about making the tackler bend his back should decrease the likelihood of a head clash with the ball carrier but may increase the likelihood of head clash with fellow tacklers? I wonder which statistic will prove to be more prevalent when the rules change. If there are more head clashes with team mates as a result of the change, then there's an argument to revert to things as they are.

 

This is exactly right.

The NRL study I quoted earlier concluded that "the greatest risk of a tackler HIA occurred when head contact was very low (knee, boot) or high (head and elbow). HIAs were most common following head-to-head impacts. The lowest propensity for tackler HIA was found when the tackler’s head was in proximity with the ball carrier’s torso.”

So, HIA were most common following head clashes.  We know uprighting tackling causes the most of these instances.

Moving tackles lower will eliminate this but it may create further dangers of head clashes between multiple defenders.  The key thing is that we look at the continued evidence and adapt accordingly.

Edited by Dunbar
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"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

"If someone doesn't value evidence, what evidence are you going to provide to prove that they should value it? If someone doesn't value logic, what logical argument could you provide to show the importance of logic?" — Sam Harris

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1 hour ago, Sports Prophet said:

I haven’t been giving this topic much thought. In a sport which it is illegal to tackle above the shoulders, I frankly disagree with these measures which detract from the physical abilities of the game.

Finally giving it some thought, it has only really just occurred to me that more concussions in the pro game could well be suffered by the tackler rather than the ball carrier. If not more, then certainly a good proportion. What happens when we keep directing tacklers to tackle lower and in turn place the tackler’s head in a compromising position against the full force of a player running towards them? I think there is an argument that enforcing lower tacking will only lead to more concussions.

This is a physical sport. Those who admire it, mostly admire the physical aspect. Those who play it, mostly admire the physical aspect. The game will never be popular with everyone and will never be truly safe. I fear the tackle below the arm pit rule and the pressure it will place on officials and the subsequent detrimental effect it will have on the aesthetics of a match will only serve to turn lots of fans away, whilst gaining the popularity of few if any.

Can't see Peter V'Landy wanting this especially with the Las Vegas opener of this game and wanting to sell the physicality of the NRL to the USA market.

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6 minutes ago, fighting irish said:

How is boxing escaping this kind of scrutiny? And especially the animalistic octogon? 

Again that’s because if you enter a boxing ring you accept you are going to get punched in the head. That’s why the RFL don’t have to worry about accidental head clashes they are unfortunately part of the game. No where in the RL laws does it say when you are taking the ball in someone is going to smash you in the head. This is what the RFL can control and must be seen to be doing something on. Maybe if all the coaches player and fans who moaned when the clamp down came in had given it chance they wouldn’t need to be bringing these measures in. 

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12 minutes ago, fighting irish said:

How is boxing escaping this kind of scrutiny?

Does it need repeating again that boxing has had to make changes to how fights are refereed, how long the fights are, how fighters train, the medical oversight at each fight, the number of medics on hand ...

Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life. (Terry Pratchett)

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Just now, bobbruce said:

Again that’s because if you enter a boxing ring you accept you are going to get punched in the head.

Boxing has made significant changes.

Never let anyone do a 'whatabout' that they haven't.

Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life. (Terry Pratchett)

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Just now, gingerjon said:

Boxing has made significant changes.

Never let anyone do a 'whatabout' that they haven't.

They have but they are still allowed to punch each other in the head and also continue after obviously being concussed. The boxers taking part can’t take them to court saying they didn’t think this was going to happen though. Or that they felt like the governing body allowed it to happen as that is a clear part of the sport they are taking part in. 

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Just now, bobbruce said:

They have but they are still allowed to punch each other in the head and also continue after obviously being concussed. The boxers taking part can’t take them to court saying they didn’t think this was going to happen though. Or that they felt like the governing body allowed it to happen as that is a clear part of the sport they are taking part in. 

They aren't meant to - it is meant to be one of the things the referee stops the fight for. (I know, I know, but ...).

Boxers sue and win? Here's a famous example: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watson_v_British_Boxing_Board_of_Control

Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life. (Terry Pratchett)

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55 minutes ago, gingerjon said:

Does it need repeating again that boxing has had to make changes to how fights are refereed, how long the fights are, how fighters train, the medical oversight at each fight, the number of medics on hand ...

Well it looks as if it does.

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1 hour ago, Dunbar said:

This is exactly right.

The NRL study I quoted earlier concluded that "the greatest risk of a tackler HIA occurred when head contact was very low (knee, boot) or high (head and elbow). HIAs were most common following head-to-head impacts. The lowest propensity for tackler HIA was found when the tackler’s head was in proximity with the ball carrier’s torso.”

So, HIA were most common following head clashes.  We know uprighting tackling causes the most of these instances.

Moving tackles lower will eliminate this but it may create further dangers of head clashes between multiple defenders.  The key thing is that we look at the continued evidence and adapt accordingly.

This is one thing that it's probably quite hard to monitor, a head on head collision is clear and obvious and more likely to result in a HIA because of its nature where as every tackler getting an elbow/knee etc to the head won't always be picked up on. Did the RFL introduce spotters for games to try and pick up on things like this, I can't remeber, but things like that are so hard to monitor at lower levels as most players will shake off these type of knocks and want to carry on playing.

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11 minutes ago, The Blues Ox said:

This is one thing that it's probably quite hard to monitor, a head on head collision is clear and obvious and more likely to result in a HIA because of its nature where as every tackler getting an elbow/knee etc to the head won't always be picked up on. Did the RFL introduce spotters for games to try and pick up on things like this, I can't remeber, but things like that are so hard to monitor at lower levels as most players will shake off these type of knocks and want to carry on playing.

That is certainly a consideration.  The data comes from the NRL where every game is televised so high quality angles and replays and every game has an independent doctor looking for such issues.

As you move through the professional, semi pro and community ranks things will drastically change.

I guess we can only go on data we have access to though.

"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

"If someone doesn't value evidence, what evidence are you going to provide to prove that they should value it? If someone doesn't value logic, what logical argument could you provide to show the importance of logic?" — Sam Harris

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42 minutes ago, Dunbar said:

That is certainly a consideration.  The data comes from the NRL where every game is televised so high quality angles and replays and every game has an independent doctor looking for such issues.

As you move through the professional, semi pro and community ranks things will drastically change.

I guess we can only go on data we have access to though.

That's probably what the mouthguards are for.

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5 minutes ago, The Blues Ox said:

Again though, most mouthguards have been proven not to reduce the chances of concussion.

That wasn't my point. In case you missed it, Superduper new mouthguards with accelerometers are to be introduced and will provide data.

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2 hours ago, Griff said:

That wasn't my point. In case you missed it, Superduper new mouthguards with accelerometers are to be introduced and will provide data.

Yes that's what I thought you meant.

Then if a one on one, midriff tackler suddenly experiences really high head acceleration from a seemingly innocuous tackle, the mouth-guard data would flag up that something nasty had happened (such as a strike by the ball carriers elbow, or forearm). My own nose was dramatically reconfigured in just such an impact.

These mouth-guards, sound like a really good innovation to me.

Of course if the data was relayed to the ref live, then he'd be made aware instantly, that something dangerous had happened and could take action (to stop play) which could be crucial in saving the injured player from further damage, rather than waiting for months for the statistical analysis to be concluded, when the individual event may go un-noticed amongst a large data set.

He could then also, penalise the offender.

I don't think that kind of technology is on offer, or even proposed for the future, but I think that's interesting to consider. 

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A few points to pick up here:

The mouthguards (IMGs) are not new. Collision impacts were measured initially in NFL using sensors in the helmet. These were inaccurate as there are not directly connected to the skull (layperson's terms). Papers analysing the effectiveness of IMGs in measuring head impacts have been around for 10 years.

Analysis comparing IMGs with video footage in matches and training was published in 2018 by Stanford University using College American Football. The video analysis was far more in depth than the RFL study. In the Stanford study all video footage was multi- angled and the head impacts went through two rounds of assessment. (The RFL-Beckett's  study goes into nowhere near the same depth and often uses single angle camera events which are not reliable) The Stanford study also noted that the IMGs only picked up 71.2% of the Head Contact Events picked up on video. Also in a NFL study as well as the sports science researchers all "events" had to be watched by two "former athletes" with more than 10 years' experience (i.e., they knew something about the game that they were assessing).

The IMGs issued in RU and RL last year had a pretty low take up by players. This is because they are uncomfortable. In American Football the player can spit it out after 5s and wait 50s until the next "down", RU & RL are more continuous

As far as I am aware the newer IMGs (v2.0 as opposed to 1.4) as worn in the WXV will be issued. The chip is in a different place and the mouthguard is more similar to a "normal" dental mouthguard

Having said all this. Most people, including the Beckett's researchers, are still obsessing re tackle height and reducing "head to head contacts" leading to "one off" concussion events. This is a "straw man" and easily knocked down. Lower tackle height, fewer concussions equals safer game mantra.

CTE is linked to the accumulation of micro "sub-concussion" events. The effect of these cannot be measured by IMGs, they just give you an arbitrary "load" 

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