In May 2013, 17-year old Rowan Stringer died as the result of a head injury she sustained while playing rugby with her high school team.

In the week prior to her final game, Rowan had been hit twice—and likely sustained a concussion each time. These concussions were not recognized, and she continued to play. When she was hit again in her last game, she suffered what is known as second-impact syndrome—a catastrophic swelling of the brain caused by a second injury that occurs before a previous injury has healed. Rowan collapsed on the field and died four days later in the hospital.

A coroner’s inquest was convened to investigate the circumstances of Rowan’s death. The coroner’s jury made 49 recommendations for how the Canadian Federal Government—as well as Ontario’s government ministries, school boards, and sports organizations—should improve the way concussions are managed in this province.

A key outcome of the inquest was a recommendation to enact legislation designed to cover organized amateur sport—including universities—in Ontario. Bill 193, Rowan’s Law (Concussion Safety), 2018, was enacted in 2018 in Ontario.

The coroner’s jury recommendations also addressed surveillance, prevention, detection, management, and awareness.

At SportRisk, we’ve developed a concussion training package that will help campus recreation professionals address the concussions liability issue—and address the key recommendations outlined in Rowan’s Law. A longtime NIRSA partner, SportRisk has delivered quality risk management assessment and training tools to NIRSA schools for many years.

About the concussions training package

The SportRisk concussion training package includes two separate modules: one module allows you to educate your staff, coaches, and participants with overview information and awareness training and the other module offers more advanced recognition and response training for those individuals with a responsibility to recognize potential concussions and respond appropriately.

These training tools have been developed exclusively for the campus recreation market and include a built-in tracking mechanism that provides key participation statistics. Not only does the tool help to eliminate staff time dedicated to data entry, it also helps you demonstrate due diligence to insurance companies.

Glen Bergeron, PhD, Director of the Heads Up Concussion Institute at the University of Winnipeg, says: “The program emphasizes the importance of a comprehensive team approach that includes administration, coaches, athletes, officials, medical staff and fans. The video is cleverly produced to capture the attention of the audience and deliver the message in a succinct and easy to remember way.”

The discounted $495 annual subscription fee—available to NIRSA member schools—is affordable for programs small and large. So don’t miss out on your chance to be among the early adopters of this new tool and show that your school is at the cutting edge of promising practices.

  • For more information about the SportRisk concussions training package, visit the SportRisk website.

Ian McGregor, PhD, is currently the President of Ian McGregor & Associates.