Aug 02, 2011 at 03:53 PM
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Dick's Sporting Goods Looks To Combat Concussions With Latest Sponsorship

With sports concussions drawing more attention in recent years, Dick's Sporting Goods latest sponsorship is aiming to raise awareness and prevent them in youth sports. According to the Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, up to 3.8 million recreation- and sports-related concussions occur in the United States every year. Though Dick's sponsorship of PACE, which stands for Protecting Athletes through Concussion Education, up to one million athletes at more than 3,300 middle and high schools nationwide will receive computerized concussion evaluations and education on the subject.

Through September 12, they will donate $1 to the PACE Program for every pair of athletic shoes purchased in any of its 449 U.S. stores or online at Tying in social media, Dick's Sporting Goods has pledged an additional $1 donation for consumers who post about PACE on the Dick's Sporting Goods Facebook page, tweet about PACE with the #DSGPACE hashtag, or check-in to a Dick's Sporting Goods location on Facebook Places or Foursquare.

"Protecting the next generation of athletes is a cause we are dedicated to, and as young athlete concussions continue to rise, we want to be at the forefront for driving awareness, education, and screening," said Edward W. Stack, Chairman and CEO of Dick's Sporting Goods. "The PACE Program brings together concussion education with state-of-the-art testing. We are excited to partner with ImPACT and founders Drs. Joseph Maroon, Mark Lovell and Michael 'Micky' Collins to provide baseline testing for up to one million young athletes."

Pittsburgh football legend Jerome Bettis will serve as national spokesperson for the Dick's Sporting Goods PACE Program.

"In more than 20 years of playing football in high school, college and the pros, I unfortunately experienced a number of concussions," said Bettis. "Every young athlete should have the opportunity to take a baseline concussion test, and through the PACE Program, up to one million youths will now have that chance."

ImPACT begins with a 20-minute baseline test that is administered pre-season. If a concussion is suspected later, another post-injury test is administered by trained clinicians to assess the possible after-effects.

"We're thrilled to partner with Dick's Sporting Goods on this remarkable program," said Mark R. Lovell, Ph.D. FACPN, Chief Executive Officer of ImPACT. "PACE will not only provide baseline testing for an unprecedented number of young athletes, but it will empower the schools with three key tools in managing concussions - awareness, education, and baseline testing."

Throughout the month of August, the Dick's Sporting Goods PACE Program will tour numerous store locations across the U.S. to raise awareness and education about the prevalence and severity of concussions. In addition to providing Certified ImPACT Consultant-led seminars and demo tests for young athletes, parents, and coaches, Dick's Sporting Goods will feature special guest appearances by pro athletes who have had life experiences with concussions.

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