Yesterday it was announced that two law modifications will be trialled in the RFL Academy competition this summer, as part of the three-year research project across Rugby League led by Leeds Beckett University. The project is quantifying head impact and acceleration exposures in the sport with the aim of increasing understanding and reducing future risk.
The following law modifications will be trialled over four rounds of the Academy competition from June 15 to July 30:
The legal tackle height will be reduced to below the armpit at initial contact, with penalisation for contact on the head and neck at any point.
Kick-offs will now be taken from 10 metres further forward – on the opposition’s 40-metre line, rather than the halfway line at present – to reduce the impact of ensuing collisions.
Now Super League’s most successful player Jamie Peacock has had his say on the Super League website and praised the way they are being introduced:
“I’m interested to see how the latest law modifications to reduce concussions are going to pan out in rugby league.
“It’s on the back of a three-year research project across the sport led by Leeds Beckett University.
“It’s more positive steps to lessen the risks of concussion and receiving concussions which is good news. And rugby league have got it right by targeting a trial period rather than doing a ‘like it or lump it’ style.
“It’s certainly taken some lessons from how rugby union messed things up. They initially decided on no tackling above the waist which was met with real opposition.”