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Grass beats artificial surfaces

Football rules Getting started with football

I never liked playing on artificial surfaces. The problem with these surfaces, in my opinion, is that your shoes get stuck, which makes you more susceptible to injury. The game is faster on this surface, but when players make quick cuts or attempt to move too quickly, they seem to twist their knees and feet because their shoes stick to the surface.

I never could find the right shoe for artificial surfaces. I even tried basketball sneakers. I think I tried on maybe a thousand different styles of nub-tipped shoes.I tried everything on turf, and I retired never being satisfied with any of the shoes.

Players also suffer what I call turf burns when they dive to make a tackle or when a ball carrier skids across the surface. I’ve had the skin on my elbows and knees rip right off me. Some teams use what doctors give burn victims — it’s called second skin. A thin, jellylike material, second skin can be cut to size and placed on the turf burn. The problem with any turf burn is that it can last for two to three weeks, and even if you don’t play on turf again, the scab gets ripped off every day in practice.

To prevent these types of injuries, a lot of players wear elastic sleeves over their elbows, forearms, and knees. I tried playing with them, but they kept slipping down after I started sweating. I didn’t like having to pull them up or back on for every play — it was an unnecessary, useless activity.

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