To prevent the potentially serious effects that result from concussions, high schools have implemented new rules in sports to significantly limit the amount of concussions. One rule that has greatly reduced the amount of concussions in high school athletics is that concussed players need to be withheld from playing until they get clearance to play by a doctor; however, it is difficult for a doctor to diagnose an amount of rest because of the varying severities of this head injury. Therefore, even with a doctor’s clearance, players may need to sit out additional time to ensure they are back to full health. This rule is important because if someone has had a concussion, they are more susceptible to getting another. Another change is that referees now can give more harsh penalties for unnecessary roughness and fouls (Volpe). Most schools also provide concussion testing for athletes before their seasons start to compare the damage done after a concussion to how their brain functioned before the concussion. Some schools have also reduced the amount of unnecessary contact in practices to try to cut down on the probability of an injury. More protective equipment has also made an impact on the the amount of concussions at the high school age level. Protective masks now worn by softball pitchers and sturdier helmets worn by football players are a couple examples of these equipment changes.