Sailing boat

Concussion Policy

Rowan's Law

Ontario Sailing Concussion Information

The Royal Hamilton Yacht Club 
(Established 1888)

This policy applies to all registered participants, coaches, volunteers and individuals involved with the club in any capacity. This policy will apply to all designated sailing activities including but not limited to ongoing registered activities, special events or groups and regattas.

The Royal Hamilton Yacht Club (Established 1888) has agreed to adopt the Ontario Sailing Concussion Management Policy for all designated sailing activities associated with our club to be in compliance with Ontario laws and Ontario Sailing policies.

The Policy as set by our Provincial Sport Organization is appropriate to all our sailing activities and ensures alignment with best practices as well as legal requirements.

The policy and procedures as approved by Ontario Sailing on February 12th 2019 and updated August 20th 2019 is attached. We commit to ensuring we update our policy and procedures as Ontario Sailing updates their document.
Board approved last: January 22, 2020
Review date: January 22, 2020
Operational Procedures
The Royal Hamilton Yacht Club (RHYC) will follow the procedures as laid out in the Ontario Sailing procedures incorporating the sign off of the review of resources and Codes of Conduct into our registration process.

Copies of the Concussion Recognition Tool 5 and the Concussion Removal and Return Handout Document will be available in First Aid Kits as well as in the club house.

We will take responsibility for decision making in the removal of a participant both during our activities and while traveling to events with participants representing the club. If someone is removed, our team will ensure they communicate the required information and the incident will be reported and their progression through Return to Sailing tracked, ensuring they do not return to the water without written medical clearance.
Last reviewed: January 22, 2020

  • Before, or during registration, each participant must acknowledge they have read the Ontario Ministry provided Concussion Resources AND that they have read and agreed to the Ontario Sailing Concussion Code of Conduct – Participant. This must happen annually.
  • Before being active, all coaches (and trainer/first aid provider) must acknowledge they have read the Ontario Ministry provided Concussion Resources AND that they have read and agreed to the Ontario Sailing Concussion Code of Conduct – Coach. This must happen annually.
  • A coach needs to remove an athlete for a suspected concussion if:
They have suffered an injury where there was potential for direct or indirect force to head, neck, or upper body AND they experience or demonstrate any Concussion related symptoms;
OR the participant discloses they have a concussion or possible concussion through other activities.
  • If removed, they are to be referred to a medical doctor (or nurse practitioner) for an assessment
  • Upon removal, each participant (parent/guardian if under 18) needs to be given the Ontario Sailing handout with concussion removal and return to sport procedures.
  • Upon removal, the coach needs to ensure participant (and parent/guardian if under 18) is aware that they are required to disclose a concussion diagnosis to any other sport organization and/or school they may be associated with.
  • Any incident removing an individual due to suspected concussion requires the responsible adult in charge to complete an incident report submit it and track it with a secure system in the club. (If removal is due to participant disclosure a report also needs to be completed.)
  • Board President or designate should track all reports to ensure follow up and appropriate compliance with policy.
  • Coach will retain a copy of report and update it with progression through the return to sport stages.
  • If written clearance is provided, it will be attached to report to complete full package on file.
  • If removed, athlete may return if they confirm to coach they have undergone a medical assessment and have not been diagnosed with having a concussion.
  • If they are diagnosed with a concussion, Coach should stay in touch with them as they work through the first 4 stages of the return protocol under medical recommendations.
  • Participant needs to present written medical clearance to begin Stage 5 which allows on the water practice with club. (Full return to school is priority over return to sport.)
  • Athlete can only return to competition after two on-the-water situations without a return of symptoms.
Wording for Registration – Awareness & Code of Conduct Compliance
We are suggesting a check box on your registration form that has this statement:
“I (and my parent/legal guardian if I am under 18) confirm that I have reviewed the provided Concussion Resources and I acknowledge and commit to the Ontario Sailing Concussion Code of Conduct.”
Links to Resources
Note: The required 2 page handout (1 piece of paper back to back) is under Ontario Sailing Concussion Resources. Copies should be located in a central place for coaches to easily access anytime anyone is removed.
Staff Support
For any additional resources, sample documents, or support in managing concussions and meeting the requirements of Rowan’s Law please do not hesitate to touch base with Lisa Roddie, COAST Manager (