HOWARD — East Knox High School sophomore Winnie Hinson has seen it all when it comes to concussions. It’s enough to make any parent shift into high worry mode and stock up on Grecian Formula.
“I’ve actually had four (concussions),” said Hinson, who plays both basketball and softball. “My last one was in February. I went up for a rebound and a girl, who was six feet, went up at the same time.”
From that point on, Hinson continued to relate the story with the pieces that were told to her by others.
“I came back down and knocked my head on the ground and I knocked myself out,” said Hinson. “They thought I cracked the back of my skull, I got whiplash from that. I tore some tendons in the back of my neck. I was knocked out for a minute-and-a-half. Then, I was incoherent and I didn’t know where I was.”
Hinson, who had just sustained the worst concussion of her young life, does recall waking up on the gymnasium floor with her mother and her coach looking down at her.
“They asked me where I was,” said Hinson. “I looked over and saw the Centerburg sign and I said, ‘Well, it says that I’m in Centerburg High School.’ I lay on the floor for half an hour.”
For Hinson, it was the end of her basketball season. Much more importantly though, it was her first step through the new concussion protocol on the road to recovery.
“Contest officials and coaches are trained to recognize the signs, symptoms and behaviors that are consistent with concussions,” said Ohio High School Athletic Association assistant director Deborah Moore. “When any official observes a student, who is manifesting any of those signs, symptoms or behaviors during an athletic contest, that student has to be removed from the contest and cannot return to the contest without written medical authorization. By medical, we define that as an MD, a DO, or a licensed athletic trainer. So, if none of those individuals are available at the site, the student cannot return to the game.”
Even without the concussion, the other injuries were enough to have her removed from the game. Despite the obvious extent of her injuries, Hinson’s reaction to being pulled from the game that day, was not uncommon with concussion sufferers.