USA Hockey Magazine

November 2014

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 13 of 58

line change ADVICE FOR PARENTS, REFS AND COACHES Despite being diagnosed with Stage IV Melanoma cancer in April 2012 and given just six weeks to live, Leland Fay has not let his situation curb his involvement with the game he loves. "The subject of hockey never gets old — playing, reading, watching, talking. Just ask my poor wife," said Fay, who grew up playing hockey in the Chicago-land area. Much of his treatments over the past two-plus years to fight the cancer — which spread to his lungs, liver, stomach and brain — have included trips to other cities, including a six-month stay in Los Angeles. Through his treatments and consistent battles with fatigue, nausea and depression, Fay has remained on the ice as a Mite coach for his two sons, who both play in the Colorado Rampage Hockey Association. "My oldest son Connor's focus and effort, despite starting relatively late, has been awesome to see," said Fay, an aerospace engineer at Lockheed Martin. "Getting a toothless, ear-to-ear grin from my 7-year-old Derek on a nice play is not too bad either." PHOTOS COURTESY OF Leland Fay; ILLUSTRATION BY Mike DeArmond NOVEMBER. 2014 USAHOCKEYMAGAZINE.COM 12 The hockey season is in full swing and that means the USA Hockey Rulebook is in high demand. Fortunately for officials, parents, coaches, players and fans across the globe, the USA Hockey Mobile Rulebook site puts the rules of hockey in the palm of their hand. Launched in January, the mobile- optimized site has served more than 75,000 users. The app-like feel provides excellent navigation and includes a full glossary, hundreds of casebook videos and all content can be shared on social media. Just bookmark on your mobile device for the quickest access to the rules of hockey. USA HOCKEY RULES AT YOUR FINGERTIPS There was a time when I rarely heard about concussions. But now, hardly a season goes by where I don't witness a sig- nificant injury or meet a parent whose child recently suffered one. Surprisingly, even the most well pro- tected players are not exempt from harm, as West Springfield, Mass., hockey mom Tiffany Basile found out the hard way. Her daughter Kaylee's talent and pas- sion as a goalie was putting her on the college recruiting radar. And then, an opposing team stormed her net, delivering an unexpected blow to the head. A concus- sion put her out for a week, with lingering effects causing depression and anxiety. A year later, a second hit to the head during a practice only made matters worse. Kaylee's eyes couldn't follow a pen, her balance was off, and she failed every computer brain test. She suffered a seizure during an MRI and results confirmed what her mom had feared. The risk of further injury on the ice was too significant. "Breaking the news that she could never play again was horrible and heartbreaking," says Basile. But for the sake of Kaylee's health, there simply was no other option. "It was best for her to steer clear of any activities that can risk more harm and injury. Her health and safety are first." Basile advises parents to educate them- selves on the signs and symptoms of con- cussions and to share this knowledge with their athletes. "I'm thankful to have my daughter with me after all she has been through." Hockey dad Greg Jewett, a physical education teacher for Christian Brothers Academy in Syracuse, N.Y., raises con- cerns about protocol for players returning to the ice after a concussion. Last season's Peewee coach was very supportive when his son, Alec, missed practices after suf- fering from a mild concussion. But do all coaches feel that way? Youth hockey programs are not moni- tored by schools, and the policies within these programs regarding concussions and testing vary. This lack of consistency may lead to avoidable harm. "I think that youth hockey organiza- tions should adopt the impact testing that high schools use as a way to measure brain activity and if a player is ready to return," Jewett says. "But with no trainers on site and no testing in place, this is a problem for youth hockey going forward." He raises a valid point. When there is no organizational protocol in place, players may find themselves prematurely pressured to return to the ice by teammates, parents and coaches. Concussion care is challenging. Even the highest levels of professional sports are reex- amining the way they treat head trauma. Thankfully, USA Hockey provides online resources to help parents and play- ers. Take the time to educate yourself, and share your knowledge with others. Work with your teams to develop safety proto- cols that don't rush kids back to the ice too quickly. And always remember to seek timely medical treatment. So while we can't wrap our kids in bubble wrap, we can continue to wrap our minds around safety procedures and prevention. Syracuse, N.Y. hockey mom Christie Casciano Burns is the author of The Puck Hog and Haunted Hockey in Lake Placid. COACH OF THE MONTH Leland Fay Age 43 Monument, Colo. HOCKEY MOM COLUMN By CHRISTIE CASCIANO BURNS Concussion Care Is Challenging For Parents

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of USA Hockey Magazine - November 2014