THINKFIRST and play SMART HOCKEY: New Educational Video Encourages 'Respect' Among Current & Future Generations of Players to Help Avoid Injury

Mar 29, 2011, 11:30 ET from Scotiabank - Sponsorships & Donations

Video features CWHL and NHL players John Tavares, Tessa Bonhomme, Patrice Bergeron, Tyler Myers and Caroline Ouellette

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TORONTO, March 29 /PRNewswire/ - At a live panel discussion and video screening held earlier today in Toronto, ThinkFirst Pensez d'Abord Canada, Canada's leading authority on brain and spinal cord injury in sport, Scotiabank and Reebok-CCM Hockey introduced ThinkFirst SMART HOCKEY - an educational video intended for young hockey players, their families, coaches and other game officials on how to play SMART HOCKEY to prevent brain and spinal cord injuries.

The 25-minute ThinkFirst SMART HOCKEY video encourages 'respect' as a team-building attitude that can help current and future generations of players avoid injury and provides information on concussions and concussion recovery. In addition to the video, audience members took in a panel discussion addressing the growing concerns of safety and concussions in hockey, led by well known hockey players Cassie Campbell-Pascall, Keith Primeau, and Tessa Bonhomme, also featuring Scott Oakman of the Greater Toronto Hockey League (GTHL) and Dr. Charles Tator

"Ongoing concerns about concussion in hockey draws attention to the need to focus on education," said Dr. Charles Tator, founder of ThinkFirst. "A concussion is a brain injury and the best defense against brain injury is prevention. This means respecting yourself and others on the ice, wearing the gear, and using your brain to navigate risks. Along with our partners, we have developed ThinkFirst SMART HOCKEY, a tool to teach players how to use their brains to protect their bodies." 

The video was developed and reviewed in consultation with a team of multidisciplinary experts including members of ThinkFirst Canada's Concussion Education and Awareness Committee, sports medicine doctors, neurosurgeons, physiotherapists, researchers and concussion experts in Canada.

"Scotiabank's dedication to hockey is based on Canadians' love of the game and our approach is to help educate current and future generations of hockey players on respect, safety and team work. Our involvement with the ThinkFirst SMART HOCKEY video further demonstrates that commitment," said Duncan Hannay, Scotiabank Senior Vice-President, Canadian Marketing.

To coincide with the start of the 2011/12 hockey season and to encourage ongoing dialogue between players, parents and coaches, Scotiabank will be hosting learning seminars across the country, which will highlight the ThinkFirst SMART HOCKEY video.

"At Reebok-CCM Hockey, we believe that the most fundamental aspect of a team sport such as ice hockey is the need for respect among players of all ages and all levels of play," said Len Rhodes, Senior Vice-President & General Manager, Reebok-CCM Hockey. "The best medicine is prevention and that is why we are a proud to present ThinkFirst SMART HOCKEY with ThinkFirst and Scotiabank. We want to help make this the best game in the world and the most fun for players and spectators alike!"

ThinkFirst SMART Hockey video is endorsed by the NHL, NHLPA, IIHF and Hockey Canada. To view the full 25 minute SMART HOCKEY video, please visit

Tips for playing SMART HOCKEY

  • Learn what a concussion is, and how to recognize the signs and symptoms. When in doubt, sit them out!
  • Follow the six Return to Play Guidelines with medical supervision
  • Wear protective gear that is well fitted and is in good condition, especially your helmet.
  • Balance your performance with safety
  • Play with the right attitude and respect for yourself and others

About ThinkFirst Pensez d'Abord Canada
ThinkFirst Pensez d'Abord Canada is a national, charitable organization dedicated to preventing brain and spinal cord injury. Founded in 1992 by renowned neurosurgeon, Dr. Charles Tator, ThinkFirst Canada continues to be an injury prevention leader encouraging children and youth and those who care about them to be active and safe. ThinkFirst advocates for proven injury prevention strategies including helmet use. At the heart of ThinkFirst Canada are Chapters across Canada, stretching across the country in every province. ThinkFirst's injury prevention message is promoted through school based and sports and rec programs, concussion education, as well as through community presentations with the help of VIPs (Voices for Injury Prevention), a dedicated group of injury survivors who share the message that prevention is the only cure.

About Scotiabank 
As the Official Bank of the NHL®, NHLPA®, NHL Alumni™ and the CWHL, Scotiabank is very proud to be Canada's Hockey Bank. Scotiabank has a long tradition of supporting hockey in Canada from local teams and minor hockey associations to professional players and leagues. Through its partnerships, Scotiabank's hockey programs enrich the communities where Canadians live and work by engaging fans and players in new ways to celebrate our game. Scotiabank supports the passion and pride Canadians feel for hockey and believes it is fundamental to helping young people learn about teamwork, camaraderie and the spirit of competition. Scotiabank's partnership with Pro Hockey Life provides exclusive in-store and online discounts to the Bank's customers, promotes advice on equipment and enhances the grassroots community programs of both companies. Scotiabank also has partnerships with the Montreal Canadiens®, the Calgary Flames® whose home arena is the Scotiabank Saddledome, and the Ottawa Senators® whose home arena is Scotiabank Place. For more information on Scotiabank's hockey programs visit

Scotiabank is committed to supporting the communities in which we live and work, both in Canada and abroad, through our global philanthropic program, 'Bright Future'. Recognized as a leader internationally and among Canadian corporations for our charitable donations and philanthropic activities, Scotiabank has provided on average approximately $44 million annually to community causes around the world over each of the last five years. Visit us at

About Reebok-CCM Hockey
Reebok-CCM Hockey, a subsidiary of the adidas Group, is headquartered in Montreal. With operations in Canada, the United States and Europe, the Company is the world's largest designer, manufacturer and marketer of hockey equipment and related apparel under two of the most recognized hockey brand names: Reebok Hockey and CCM Hockey. Reebok-CCM Hockey equips more professional hockey players than any other company, including superstars like Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin. Reebok-CCM Hockey is also the official outfitter of the National Hockey League, the American Hockey League, the Canadian Hockey League, the ECHL and several NCAA and national teams.

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SOURCE Scotiabank - Sponsorships & Donations