KIDS should not be allowed to play rugby or take part in boxing because contact sports are a form of child abuse, a study says.
Researchers say they can lead to brain injury and neurodegenerative disease, and schools that allow them do so without informed consent.
Eric Anderson, professor of sport at the University of Winchester, said: “Cultural perception is that striking a child outside sport is abuse but [in sport it is] somehow socially acceptable.
“The brain’s damaged in both.”
Last night, rugby body the RFU said compared to a global child obesity epidemic, it believes the sport has a “role in keeping people active and healthy”.
The research comes as over 200 retired rugby stars sue three of the sports governing bodies, claiming the organisations failed to put in place reasonable measures to protect them from brain injuries.
Among the former players involved in the High Court case are England’s 2003 World Cup winne
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