Updated: Sep 15, 2021
After just one season of rugby players at a professional team saw a decline in both blood flow to the brain and cognitive function, a new study claims
The University of South Wales research followed a professional rugby team over the course of a season, testing players pre-season, mid-season and post season. It will be published in Wednesday's September edition of the Journal of Experimental Physiology. Researchers followed a team which plays in the United Rugby Championship.
They say more research is needed on the long-term effects. https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/58369271
This new study comes as 200 former players - Welsh and English, male and female, professional and amateur - have begun legal action in tandem with Rylands Law firm, against the game's governing bodies World Rugby, the Welsh Rugby Union and Rugby Football Union.
The university team are also working on a similar study, comparing current players and retired players against a control group to determine whether there is a faster rate of decline in brain function in rugby players.
However, all of those involved in the study saw a decline in blood flow to the brain and cognitive function between pre and post-season results.
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"a key change being reducing the amount of training impacts.
Contact in training camps has been halved, and only one contact training session is allowed a week during the season."