Matt Clark (former NFL star) Visits to Learn More about Injury Prevention and Sports Concussions

Published on 
February 18, 2014
Matt Clark NFL
Matt Clark with Dr. Jeffrey Upperman

Playing sports is a great way for children to develop good exercise habits for life. Sports can help improve physical fitness, build self-discipline and just make children feel better. Recently, however, sports are leading to more and more injuries every year, in particular, concussions. Although children are more prone to injuries as they are still growing, by taking the necessary precautions and becoming informed, these injuries can be largely prevented. At Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, we were fortunate to have a visit from Matt Clark, former NFL player, to learn more about our injury prevention program. As a former defensive player, Matt knows all too well about the seriousness of sports injuries. Growing up in Southern California, Matt played college football at UCLA as a corner back from 2001-2004, earning an All-Conference Pac-10 honors as a senior. He went on to play for the New Orleans Saints in 2005, and later in 2006 with the Philadelphia Eagles. He currently serves as a defensive back coach, teaching techniques to various athletes at all levels around the country. While at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, Matt learned all about the workings of a Pediatric Trauma Surgeon from Jeffrey Upperman, MD. From the secure helipad down to the emergency department and operating rooms, he observed firsthand what this state-of-the-art facility and trauma center have to offer. With particular interest in our Sports Concussion Clinic, Matt learned all about the innovative technology used in the Sports Assessment Lab to analyze walking and motion. Matt also met with Tracy Zaslow, MD, and her team of experts including the entire Trauma team to discuss what can be done to spread awareness and to prevent further sports injuries from occurring. Fortunately, with rule changes recently implemented at the professional level, there is more widespread awareness about concussions and sports injuries. We appreciate Matt for taking the time to come to our hospital to learn about our programs and to share with our team his own personal experiences and ideas.