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Is Mixed Martial Arts The Answer To Football's Woes?

CBS 5 - KPHO


It's no secret that football was under a stronger magnifying glass than usual this season regarding the state of head injuries. Now, more than ever, people are are becoming aware of the significant long-term affects of concussions and other head trauma. While such an aggressive, full-contact sport like football will never truly be free of risk, there may be steps coaches can take to change how they do things. Mixed martial artist and retired Arizona Cardinal, Scott Peters, may have found the solution.

Check out the news segment above and continue reading to learn how mixed martial arts might be called upon to make football a safer sport.

(via KPHO, CBS 5)

Scott Peters makes some very valid points in the segment, his is main one being that the old-school "Lead with the face" technique it what is the primary cause of head injuries. It's an old technique that (like most sports methods) provides basis for how many young players are taught. But, according to Peters, it's wrong. So what does he provide as an answer? Why, MMA of course!

Peters, a student of MMA and Brazilian Jiu jitsu, looked to the martial arts styles when looking to find a solution to safer contact. As he demonstrates in the video segment, his "SAFE" system emphasizes a hit in which the hands and hips bear the brunt of the force of contact, rather than the face and head. It essentially creates a situation in which linemen are trying to pull off a successful martial arts take-down or throw rather than a face vs. face collision.

The great thing about Peter's 'SAFE' system is that there doesn't seem to be too drastic of a change in the action from a spectator's standpoint. Player's are still using physical strength to overpower or overtake their opponent. The energy is just being redirected in a way that is more beneficial for the health of the brain. It's also cool to see the system already being implemented by the University of Washington in their training.

As with most change, it's going to take some time before we see this (or any solution) fully implemented, especially to the NFL level. But we also know these things have to start somewhere, and hopefully it won't be too long before we see some linemen trying to pull off a hip toss or two!

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