You are here

Concussion Code of Conduct

Concussion Code of Conduct for Coaches and Team Staff

Coaches and team staff play a significant role in the personal and athletic development of their student-athletes. In accepting a coaching or team staff position with a University of Ottawa (uOttawa) team and/or club, a coach/team staff must understand that the appointment carries a responsibility and obligation towards the safety and well-being of the student-athletes. Special attention must be directed to concussion and head injuries.

In addition to the completion of the Coaching Association of Canada’s online concussion education module Making Headway in Sports, all uOttawa coaches/ team staff must adhere to the following responsibilities and concussion code of conduct:

I can help prevent concussions through my:

  • Commitment to fair play and respect for all (respecting other coaches, team trainers, officials and all participants and ensuring my athletes respect others and play fair).
  • Efforts to ensure that my athletes wear the proper equipment and wear it correctly.
  • Efforts to help my athletes develop their skills and strength so they can participate to the best of their abilities.
  • Respect for the rules of my sport or activity and efforts to ensure that my athletes do, too.

I will care for the health and safety of all participants by taking concussions seriously. I understand that:

  • A concussion is a brain injury that can have both short- and long-term effects.
  • A blow to the head, face, or neck, or a blow to the body may cause the brain to move around inside the skull and result in a concussion.
  • A person doesn’t need to lose consciousness to have had a concussion.
  • An athlete with a suspected concussion should stop participating in training, practice or competition immediately.
  • I have a commitment to concussion recognition and reporting, including self-reporting of possible concussion and reporting to a designated person when an individual suspects that another individual may have sustained a concussion.
  • Continuing to participate in further training, practice, or competition with a suspected concussion increases a person’s risk of more severe, longer lasting symptoms, and increases their risk of other injuries or even death.

I will create an environment where participants feel safe and comfortable speaking up. I will:

  • Encourage athletes not to hide their symptoms, but to tell me, an official, parent or another adult they trust if they experience any symptoms of concussion after an impact.
  • Lead by example. I will tell a fellow coach, official, team staff and seek medical attention by a physician or nurse practitioner if I am experiencing any concussion symptoms.
  • Understand and respect that any athlete with a suspected concussion must be removed from sport and not permitted to return until they undergo a medical assessment by a physician or nurse practitioner and have been medically cleared to return to training, practice or competition.
  • For coaches only: Commit to providing opportunities before and after each training, practice and competition to enable athletes to discuss potential issues related to concussions.

I will support all participants to take the time they need to recover.

  • I understand my commitment to supporting the return-to-sport process.
  • I understand the athletes will have to be cleared by a Sport Medical Doctor before returning to sport.
  • I will respect my fellow coaches, team staff, parents, physicians and Sport Medical Doctors and any decisions made with regards to the health and safety of my athletes.

I will review the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport Concussion Awareness Resources.

  • I understand that under Rowan’s Law, I am required to review one of the Concussion Awareness Resources in this website ( on a yearly basis.
  • I understand that by completing and signing this form I am confirming to having reviewed the concussion resources provided by the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport.

By signing here, I acknowledge that I have fully reviewed and commit to this Concussion Code of Conduct.