Kalkaska High School (KHS) and Kalkaska Memorial Health Center (KMHC) have partnered to tackle the issue of concussions in school sports by creating the most comprehensive return-to-play protocol in Michigan.
The Michigan High School Athletic Association’s (MHSAA) protocol requires a qualified medical professional (MD, DO, PA or NP) to unconditionally clear a student-athlete before s/he can return to practice or competition. The clearance must be in writing and signed by the qualified health professional, student-athlete, and parent.
To ensure a student-athlete is concussion free, KMHC and Kalkaska High School developed a protocol as follows:
- If a concussion is confirmed by a qualified health professional, the student-athlete will be referred out to physical therapy once the student is 24 hours symptom free (72 hours for students 12 years old and younger).
- Once at physical therapy, a student athlete will go through a 5-phase return to play program (see below).
- Once all 5 phases have been completed the student-athlete must revisit their qualified health professional to complete the “MHSAA Return to Play Form“. A student-athlete may not return to practice or competition until this form is completely filled out and returned to the athletic department.
The MHSAA will reimburse any out-of-pocket costs related to concussion suffered during an in-season practice or competition. For more information, please click here.
Return to Play Phases
Phase #1- No Activity
- Complete physical and cognitive rest
- Symptom free x 24 hours progress to phase 2
Phase #2- Light Aerobic Exercise
- 20 min of cardiovascular exercise at less than 70% heart rate
Phase #3- Sport Specific Exercise
- 45min of cardiovascular less than 80% heart rate max
Phase #4 Non-Contact Training Drills
- 60min of complex training less than 90% of heart rate max
Phase #5- Full Contact/Practice