No more tackle football for fifth and sixth graders for the city of Onalaska.
The parks and rec. department there has eliminated the program, instead going with something closer to flag football. Players will now work with a device called the Tackle Bar, which helps teach students form tackling.
Parks and rec director Dan Wick said the change came from Onalaska High School football coach Tom Yashinsky.
“Tom had encouraged us to look for some different options because he had heard people in the community that wanted to see us move away from tackle at the fifth and sixth grade level,” Wick said, adding that some parents were concerned about those children playing full-contact football, since kids grow and mature at different ages.
“It is more of a precaution,” Wick said, adding that the program did have good numbers.
Yashinsky pointed to powerhouse Menominee, that also doesn’t do tackle football until middle school as a reason it isn’t needed at that age.