Wallaby Flyhalf Elton Flatley

Q & A  The Sports Concussion Programme

 Played 38 Tests for the Wallabies scoring 187 points (Rugby World Cup 2003).

Played 114 First Class games for the Queensland Reds scoring 609 points.

Retired from rugby in 2006 at the age of 28 due to the effects of concussion.

  • What does concussion mean to you?

“Concussion is a really serious issue in professional and amateur sport. I’m glad that a lot of professional codes in Australia are taking a serious approach and being pro-active in educating players on the serious effects of concussion. Backing this up in game day situations where a player does get concussed is very important. While this is positive, there are still tens of thousands of amateur players that don’t get access to this level of education and professional medical advice. This is where I see a real benefit from The Sports Concussion Programme.”

  • What effect did concussion have on your rugby playing career?

“I had to retire from rugby at age 28. I felt that I had a lot of good years left in me. However, due to the seriousness of my concussions, I had no choice but to stop playing contact sport. As an elite player, I was very lucky to have the best medical care and advice from Queensland and Australian Rugby Union. There is a need to provide the same level of concussion care to community sports persons.”

  • What advice do you have for all the weekend sports warriors out there – young and old?

“It is very important to seek the best medical advice if you receive a concussion. It is not like a knee or a shoulder where an operation can fix it. The Sports Concussion Programme tells you exactly what to do before injury and what to do after injury – download all the Apps that you may need and get your brain function checked before it’s too late.”