Ahead of the Game: Chad Greenway, panelists discuss brain injuries at Pentagon

Ahead of the Game: Chad Greenway, panelists discuss brain injuries at Pentagon

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Ahead of the Game: Chad Greenway, panelists discuss brain injuries at Pentagon

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Public forum aimed at providing information about sports concussions, with Chad Greenway as main speaker. Presented by Argus Leader Media and Sanford Health.

Chad Greenway admits to thoughts in the back of his head about the ramifications of being an NFL player for 11 years. He’d see the former Vikings amble through, now hobbled in part because of the time they spent in the game.

He wants to know more now, which put him in good company at the Sanford Pentagon on Sunday for “Ahead of the Game: How Concussion Studies Can Make Sports Safer”, an event set up by Argus Leader Media and Sanford Health to give the curious an opportunity to ask questions and see the progress that has been made in diagnosis and treatment of brain injuries as they apply to young athletes.

“I think we need to hear more from both sides of the argument,” Greenway said while participating in a panel discussion led by the Argus Leader’s Stu Whitney that included Augustana football coach Jerry Olszewski, Storm  coach and Premier Football Academy director Kurtiss Riggs, Director of Research and Development Thayne Munce at Sanford Sports Science Institute and Sanford Health neuropsychologist Kate Higgins.

“Every case is different,” Greenway continued. “Every amount of impact is different – we need to understand that and find out how that affects us. Right now we’re getting a lot of information about the side where any contact sport is bad, is negative, is going to give you dementia, is going to give you all these issues down the road.”

While acknowledging the risk is greater – particularly when you play 11 years as a professional – is it an unreasonable risk? How have improvements in equipment and better coaching of technique changed how someone like Greenway is going to feel about his time in the game 20 or 30 years from now?

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