Sports Law • Risk Management


September 29, 2010: Triathlon Risk Management: Part II---Cycling

While chatting with JJ Johnson, a certified USAT coach at Starbuck’s yesterday, I introduced him to our website and we discussed safety issues in sports. Since I’m the Regional Officials Coordinator for USAT for Hawaii, JJ often asks me about issues relating to the USAT Competitive Rules. We discussed our amazement that so many triathletes claim that they do not know or understand the rules. This seems absurd as athletes in every other sport---football, basketball, baseball, golf, and tennis---seem to be well aware of their sport’s rules. Why should triathlon be any different?

September 27, 2010: Skier Assumed Risk of Injury by Snowboarder

In a recent case, Bell v. Dean, __A.2d __, 2010 WL 3211956 (Pa.Super. August 16, 2010), Plaintiff Bell, a skier, brought a personal injury action against Dean, a snowboarder, claiming that he sustained injuries arising out of a collision at Ski Roundtop, a recreational ski area. The accident occurred while they were both progressing down Ramrod, an “expert level” ski slope. Bell claimed that Dean was snowboarding at a high rate of speed down the steeper “headwall” of the slope and failed to keep a proper lookout, and by doing so was negligent.

September 24, 2010: Overtraining Symptoms and Prevention

Overtraining is a common problem with too many coaches and athletes failing to recognize symptoms of an overtrained athlete: fatigue, insomnia, incomplete workouts, illness, decline in performance, pain or soreness, decreased appetite and irritability. Rest from physiological and psychological demands of training is important to an athlete’s performance.

September 23, 2010: Concussion Discussion in Congress Ramps Up

While creating guidelines to help coaches and parents identify when it is safe for a concussed minor child to return to sports; there is potential harm to coaches and sport organizations. Two federal House committees are each working on a federal bill to propose legislation to protect youth from the harms of concussions. One bill is intended to gather experts to draft guidelines on how to manage concussions then dangle a carrot of incentive by offering federal grants to states to establish standards. The other bill would mandate public school districts adopt or adhere to certain standards.

September 19, 2010: Football or Endangered Species?

The question of whether to continue with Friday night football games or protect threatened Newell’s shearwater birds was one that had to be addressed on Kauai recently. The lights used to illuminate the Friday night football games confuse newborn shearwaters flying from their nests out to sea. Apparently the lights are mistaken for moonlight and have caused about 30 birds to become disoriented and fall from the skies around Vidinha Stadium on Kauai.

September 16, 2010: Crowd Management: Lessons from Hawaii 5-0

The World Premiere of Hawaii 5-0 held on Waikiki Beach attracted over 5,000 fans. I should know, because I was one of those that arrived early to stake out a place on the small area of beach located in front of a makeshift stage and large screen. There were certainly no sports and recreation involved, except for the water sports in the ocean adjacent to the event. The event did present the same issues of crowd control as any sporting event that attracts hoards of people.