LANGHORNE, PA – Pop Warner Little Scholars, Inc., the nation’s largest and oldest youth football, cheer and dance organization, today announced that noted researchers Stefan Duma, Ph.D., and Michael F. Bergeron, Ph.D., have been added to the Pop Warner Medical Advisory Committee.
Pop Warner launched the Medical Advisory Committee in 2010 to proactively address all medical issues that affect youth football and cheerleading. The committee, which is led by medical experts in neuromedicine and sports safety, is focused on the prevention, proper identification and treatment of concussions, as well as hydration awareness, proper nutrition, and general health and safety issues.
“Nothing is more important to us than the health and wellness of our young people,” said Jon Butler, executive director of Pop Warner Little Scholars. “Pop Warner is dedicated to providing the safest playing environment possible for our young athletes and our Medical Advisory Committee plays an important role in delivering on that commitment. We are grateful that Dr. Bergeron and Dr. Duma, who are among the most respected authorities in their fields, will bring valued insight that will benefit our young athletes.”
“Pop Warner is such an historic and respected organization with a clear commitment to serving young people. I look forward to working with the team to help deliver viable and effective approaches to player safety and wellness,” said Dr. Bergeron.
“I am pleased to be a part of this important team, and I look forward to sharing our research with Pop Warner in an effort to make translational advancements in player safety,” said Dr. Duma.
Stefan Duma, Ph.D., is the Harry C Wyatt Professor and the Department Head for Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics at Virginia Tech. Dr. Duma leads an active research group in the area of injury biomechanics. As the founding Director of the Center for Injury Biomechanics (CIB), his research includes automobile safety, military restraints, and sport biomechanics applications. Dr. Duma has published more than 400 technical papers in the field of injury biomechanics, including more than 100 peer reviewed journal papers and two books.
Michael F. Bergeron, Ph.D., FACSM is the Executive Director of the Sanford Sports Science Institute and the National Youth Sports Health & Safety Institute, as well as a Professor in the Department of Pediatrics, Sanford School of Medicine of the University of South Dakota at the Sanford USD Medical Center. Dr. Bergeron is a Fellow and past Trustee of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), and recently served as a member of the National Federation of State High School Associations’ Sports Medicine Advisory Committee.
Dr. Bergeron has provided individualized training to numerous youth, collegiate, and professional athletes with a particular emphasis on preparation, competition, and recovery strategies in the heat and helping athletes to avoid exertional heat illness and injury.
The Medical Advisory Committee meets annually to discuss new research, advise on policy and rule changes and provide expert advice to the Pop Warner organization to benefit the health & safety of our members. The Committee and uses the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Athletic Trainers Association (NATA) guidelines.
The Board helped guide Pop Warner’s two major rule changes for the 2012 season that address the type of contact and amount of contact allowed in football practice.