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New Legislation U16s Heading The Ball

All coaches who deliver football sessions in any of our schools, please make yourself aware of this.

FA bans primary school children from heading in training

Primary school children will no longer be able to head a football in training under new guidelines released by the English, Northern Irish and Scottish Football Associations.

The three football associations issued a statement confirming changes to their heading guidance, which come in the wake of the FIELD study which showed former footballers were three and a half times more likely to die of the neurodegenerative disease than age-matched members of the general population.

The changes stated there would be no heading at all in the “foundation phase” – primary school children – and a graduated approach to heading in training in under-12s to under-16s football.

There will be no change in terms of heading in matches, taking into consideration the extremely limited number of headers which actually occur in youth matches.

The FIELD study did not state that heading a ball was the cause of the increased prevalence of neurodegenerative conditions among footballers, but the decision to update the guidelines has been taken to “mitigate against any potential risks”, the FA said in a statement.