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English rugby
Concussed players face three weeks on sidelines
ESPN Staff
March 13, 2014

The Rugby Football Union today released guidelines that will see concussed players spend almost three weeks away from the game before they can return to play.

The minimum 'stand-down' time for amateur adults is now 19 days, with under 19s having to spend 23 days out. This means players who have been knocked unconscious will face nearly three weeks on the sidelines before they can return to competitive rugby.

Professionals and elite junior players face shorter periods out - six days for adults and 12 days for 17 to 19-year-olds. This reflects the dedicated medical supervision that professional clubs can offer to their players.

RFU guidelines state that returning to rugby after a concussion consists of two phases: rest and a graduated 'Return to Play' scheme. The 'stand-down' periods are set as a minimum, with concussed players facing longer out if recommended by a doctor.

The RFU also plans to send all licensed coaches on a mandatory player safety course, designed to help them spot the signs of concussion. The new guidelines will be taught at regional coaching seminars for schools this summer.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

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