Tough guys should wear headgear
WHAT I hate about sport is when tough guys say they don't need any protection on the footy field.
And I'm not talking about "white lighting" themselves or taking out insurance - I'm talking about common sense protection like mouth guards, head gear and even chest guards.
As the mother of three boys and one daughter who have played every code of football and love to push their luck to the limit both on the paddock and sometimes on two wheels, I am not ashamed to admit I am zealous about their protective gear.
It doesn't make them nancy boys to do what they can to minimise the damage and injuries possible on the footy field. And trust me, there is nothing attractive about a bloke who's had his front teeth knocked out or taken too many hits to the head.
Kids don't need tough guys telling them the protective gear that is easily accessible doesn't actually achieve all that much - it gives them licence to argue against it; it gives other kids licence to tease them for wearing it.
Sure, children get injured swimming in pools, and sometimes they can even get a paper cut from a book. Last week I received a life-threatening injury from an open dishwasher door. But on the football field kids intentionally hurl their developing heads and bodies at warp speed towards other kids who are sometimes four times bigger than they are (despite being the same age - but don't get me started on that).
I'll admit it - I would be a much more relaxed mother if my sons were less keen on football and motorbikes and keener on tennis and soccer (and I know injuries and head clashes sometimes happen in soccer, but you will never convince me it has the same risks as rugby league and union). Many boys love rugby league because of its high level of skill and physicality.
Like young male goats butting heads and horns on the Tibetan steppes, young male Aussies enjoy rough and tumble and getting the better of the other guy.
Wearing headgear and a mouthguard shows we've got more brains than the goats.
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