CUFC Injury & Return to Play Protocol

In the case of injury, the player’s comfort and dignity are priorities. Only the injured areas should be uncovered and private areas of the body should be covered. Injuries should be treated in the presence of others; players are not to be alone with anyone. With the exception of minor injuries, like cleaning and bandaging a scrape, only individuals qualified in First Aid or in treating sports injuries should attempt to treat an injury. If there is any question about the nature of an injury, the player should be referred to qualified medical personnel. 


Coaching staff will ensure that the physical playing environment is hazard-free to prevent injury, and ensure that players are healthy before playing.

Injured players MUST be removed from practices and games and all players MUST have parental clearance prior to returning to play from injury.

Players MUST have medical clearance before returning to play from concussion injuries.

Players MUST NOT be carried off of the field by a coach. They should be able to safely WALK off of the field on their own or aided by others.

Physical ability will be taken into consideration when coaching players. Part of training will be to improve strength, stamina, balance and agility to develop better, safer players.

Long-Term Player Development (LTPD) MUST always be considered when planning sessions and games to give each player what is required for individual growth. 

CUFC recommends the all team staff complete CPR and First Aid training.

CUFC also encourages team staff to attend seminars and other information sessions relevant to protecting young people, such as suicide awareness, mental health, self-harm, etc. 

Returning to Play Protocol

After an injury, CUFC and its Coaches, Parents and Players, have a Duty of Care to ensure that NO player participates in practices or games if they have NOT fully recovered from their injuries.

ALL players returning from injury must complete and sign a CUFC Return to Play Form and MUST have submitted it to the CUFC Office or team official prior to the activity.


Definition of an Injury:

Sports injuries result from acute trauma or repetitive stress associated with athletic activities. Sports injuries can affect bones or soft tissue (ligaments, muscles, tendons). 

Symptoms that persist, intensify, or reduce the athlete's ability to play to their full capacity without debilitating pain are considered by CUFC as an "Injury".




In the event that a player has a suspected or diagnosed concussion injury, the player MUST inform the CUFC Office and team staff.

Players and Caregivers MUST follow the CUFC Concussion Recognition Protocol and the CUFC Concussion Return to Play Protocol. 

Team staff MUST NOT allow the player to return to practices or games from a concussion injury without specific written permission from an appropriately qualified physician.



Basic Fitness Assessment

Have the returning player perform a series of light exercises that are specific to soccer. 

Watch the athlete carefully to assess their mobility, look for signs of impaired movement. Also watch the facial expressions of the player; signs of pain are difficult to hide.

If there are any doubts about the fitness of a player, coaches should approach the player's return to play with caution. The athlete's health always comes above any game; NO exceptions.

Youth players will often try to hide injuries as they are desperate to play, and some parents will also push their children into playing, even if they are not 100% fit.

The CUFC Coach has the final decision in cases of injury when a player is returning to play.

If in doubt, sit them out !!

The information in this document is intended as an educational and informational source only. It doesn't replace the advice of a qualified physician or physiotherapist. The author is not a medical professional, so make sure you consult your Family Physician or Physiotherapist if your symptoms do not improve after 72 hours or if the pain is severe. The author of this document or Chestermere United FC cannot be held responsible for any harm or injury that might occur by following the instructions and tips found here.