PBR implements concussion evaluation system

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PUEBLO, Colo. - The Professional Bull Riders announced that it will begin using VSR Sport, a computerized evaluation system, to assist in the assessment of a bull rider's ability to compete after suffering a concussion.

It is the latest step in the PBR creating a more comprehensive concussion-management program. The goal is to improve concussion care, while also making safer decisions on a bull rider's ability to continue to compete, and the ability to return to competition.

"This system is a valuable tool that will help us better demonstrate to the bull riders the functional deficits that can result from concussions and provide them with more objective information about when they may more safely return to riding," said Dr. Tandy Freeman, who has been the official on-site doctor for the PBR since its inception.

The program can objectively assess a bull rider's functional balance control. Recent clinical research has conclusively shown that deficits in postural stability and balance control following a brain injury can be quantified, and add an important element to a concussion management program.

The new system allows the utilization of data that can't be hidden or under-reported, no matter how eager a bull rider is to get back to competition. It includes protocols that accurately and objectively assess an athlete's functional balance control across a variety of athletic stances, including the new Stability Evaluation Test.

This system will also help reduce the possibility of second impact syndrome by utilizing The Rule of Three (symptoms, cognitive and balance assessments) to make the most objective decision possible for returning a bull rider to action.

The BFTS features the world's best and highest-paid bull riders competing against the fiercest bucking bulls on the planet. The TPD allows established veterans and newcomers alike the opportunity to compete against some of the world's best bucking bulls.

The BFTS is televised every week on CBS, CBS Sports Network, NBC, NBC Sports Network, and YouTube. BFTS telecasts are produced for the PBR under a multi-year agreement with David Neal Productions, a Los Angeles-based production company led by 34-time Emmy® Award winner and Peabody Award winner David Neal, who serves as executive producer. 

About the Professional Bull Riders, Inc. (PBR)
The PBR is the world's premier bull riding organization. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the founding of the PBR. In just two decades, the dream of 20 bull riders has become a global sports phenomenon that is televised worldwide. More than 100 million viewers annually watch primetime PBR programming on networks around the world including CBS, CBS Sports Network, NBC, and NBC Sports Network. The PBR has awarded over $100 million in prize money and 25 riders have earned over $1 million, including Justin McBride with $5.5 million - the most of any Western-sports athlete in history. Nearly 2 million fans attend Built Ford Tough Series and Touring Pro Division events each year. For more information on the PBR, go to www.pbr.com, or follow on Facebook at www.facebook.com/PBR, Twitter at http://twitter.com/PBR, and YouTube at http://www.YouTube.com/PBR.

Follow Jack Carnefix on Twitter @JackCarnefix.

© 2014 PBR Inc. All rights reserved.

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