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Tom Kaminski - University of Delaware. Newark, DE, US

Tom Kaminski

Professor, Kinesiology and Applied Physiology | University of Delaware


Prof. Kaminski is a leading expert on issues related to purposeful headers in interscholastic and intercollegiate soccer.






Concussion Prevention & Neck Strength - Researcher Dr. Thomas Kaminski - NecksLevel Interviews




Tom Kaminski is a leading expert on issues related to purposeful headers in interscholastic and intercollegiate soccer. His research interests include concussions, sports-related mild traumatic brain injuries and ankle instability. He co-directs the Athletic Training Research Laboratory at UD's Human Performance Laboratory and is part of a team working on the landmark NCAA/Department of Defense project examining the history of concussions in intercollegiate sports.

Industry Expertise (2)

Health and Wellness

Sport - Professional

Areas of Expertise (3)

Chronic Ankle Instability

Repetitive Head Impacts

Recovery Assessment

Media Appearances (5)

Soccer, concussions and women | UDaily

University of Delaware  online


Kaminski, a leading expert with decades of experience in research in this specialized area, was invited to speak at the conference in a discussion entitled, "Medical and Scientific Challenges in Women's Football." “I’m humbled by the opportunity,” said Kaminski. “Because Manchester United, arguably, is the most popular brand of soccer in the world in terms of professional league...it’s top shelf stuff.”

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Junior sport: age categories and soccer headers

ABC Radio National  online


Guests: Jamie Salter - High Performance Pathway Manager, Swimming Australia William, Charlie, Leo, Luke - Under 8 soccer players Thomas Kaminski - Director of Athletic Training Education, University of Delaware

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Avoiding the “Bobblehead Effect”: Strength Training Could Help Soccer Players

Scientific American  online


Upper-body strength could even mitigate a major health concern among soccer players: brain injury from repeated headers, according to Thomas Kaminski, director of the Athletic Training Education Program at the University of Delaware. Kaminski’s own research investigates ways to reduce soccer’s adverse effects on the brain.

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Soccer Headers Cause More Brain Damage in Female Players

Scientific American  online


Thomas Kaminski, a sports physiologist at the University of Delaware, who was not involved in the work, calls it “truly groundbreaking.” The research is unique in highlighting the cumulative effect of repetitive knocks on the skull, as opposed to major traumatic injuries, he says. “Very few of these subjects had a history of concussion.”

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What makes an Olympic body

The News Journal  online


Fellow UD professor Thomas Kaminski, director of athletic training education, agreed. "Certainly genetics plays an important part in the process," he said.

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Articles (5)

Incidence of Concussion and Associated Risk Factors in Collegiate Soccer: Findings from the NCAA-DoD CARE Consortium

Science and Medicine in Football

2023 This retrospective cohort study aims to examine concussion incidence rates (IR) in collegiate soccer players and compare IRs based on risk factors including sex, competition level, games/practices, history of concussion, and playing position. Collegiate soccer players were recruited (n = 2,471) from 23 institutions from the NCAA-DoD Concussion Assessment, Research, and Education (CARE) Consortium. Incidence rates for concussion per 1000 athlete exposures (AEs) were calculated across the 2015-16/2016-17 seasons. Incidence rates (IR) comparing risk factor groups were also calculated. A total 162 concussions occurred during the study, for an IR of 0.08/1000 AEs. Females were more likely to have a concussion than males overall (IR = 1.47), and were more likely to have a concussion in games (IR = 1.42) and practices (IR = 2.91).

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Similar Concussion Rates in Spring Football and Preseason: Findings From the Concussion Assessment, Research and Education Consortium

Journal of Athletic Training

2023 Context Increasing attention has been directed toward identifying aspects of football participation for targeted policy change that reduces the concussion risk. Prior researchers evaluated concussion risks during the preseason and regular seasons, leaving the spring season largely unexplored. Design In this nationally representative observational investigation of 19 National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I collegiate football programs, we assessed concussion rates and head impact exposures during the preseason, regular season, and spring practices from 2014 to 2019. All participating programs recorded the incidence of concussions, and a subset (n = 6) also measured head impact exposures.

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Sensitivity and Specificity of the ImPACT Neurocognitive Test in Collegiate Athletes and US Military Service Academy Cadets with ADHD and/or LD: Findings from the NCAA-DoD CARE Consortium

Sports Medicine

2023 Background and Objective Computer-based neurocognitive tests are widely used in sport-related concussion management, but the performance of these tests is not well understood in the participant population with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and/or learning disorder (LD). This research estimates the sensitivity and specificity performance of the Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing (ImPACT) computer-based neurocognitive test in identifying concussion in this population.

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King-Devick sensitivity and specificity to concussion in collegiate athletes

Journal of Athletic Training

2023 Context The King-Devick (K-D) test is used to identify oculomotor impairment after concussion. However, the diagnostic accuracy of the K-D test over time has not been evaluated. Objectives To (1) examine the sensitivity and specificity of the K-D test at 0 to 6 hours postinjury, 24 to 48 hours postinjury, the beginning of a return-to-play (RTP) protocol (asymptomatic), unrestricted RTP, and 6 months postconcussion and (2) compare outcomes between athletes with and those without concussion across confounding factors (sex, age, sport contact level, academic year, learning disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, migraine history, concussion history, and test administration mode).

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Optimizing concussion care seeking: a longitudinal analysis of recovery

The American Journal of Sports Medicine

2023 Background: Approximately half of concussions go undisclosed and therefore undiagnosed. Among diagnosed concussions, 51% to 64% receive delayed medical care. Understanding the influence of undiagnosed concussions and delayed medical care would inform medical and education practices. Purpose: To compare postconcussion longitudinal clinical outcomes among (1) individuals with no concussion history, all previous concussions diagnosed, and ≥1 previous concussion undiagnosed, as well as (2) those who have delayed versus immediate symptom onset, symptom reporting, and removal from activity after concussion.

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Accomplishments (5)

Eastern Athletic Trainers’ Association (EATA) 49’ Club (Hall of Fame) (professional)


National Academy of Kinesiology Fellowship (professional)


Marietta College Distinguished Alumnus Award (professional)


University of Delaware Excellence in Service Award (professional)


NATA Foundation Medal for Distinguished Athletic Training Research, (professional)


Education (3)

University of Virginia: PhD, Sports Medicine 1996

University of Arizona: MS, Exercise and Sport Science 1985

Marietta College: BS, Sports Medicine 1984

Affiliations (7)

  • National Academy of Kinesiology
  • American College of Sport Medicine (ACSM
  • Society of Health and Physical Education (SHAPE America)
  • American Kinesiology Association (AKA)
  • Delaware Athletic Trainers’ Association (DATA)
  • American Red Cross - Heartsaver Automated External Defibrillation Program
  • Beta Beta Beta Biological Society - IOTA Chapter of Marietta College

Languages (1)

  • English

Event Appearances (5)

Electropuncture for the treatment of chronic ankle instability

(2022) 9th International Ankle Symposium  Virtual

Sagittal Plane Energy Absorption during Side Hops among Individual with Anterior Cruciate Ligament Deficit

(2022) 9th World Congress of Biomechanics  Taipei, Taiwan

"De-ICED”: Weaning Athletic Trainers off Their Dependency on Rest-Ice-Compression 2022 and Beyond!

(2022) NATA 73rd Annual Meeting and Clinical Symposia  Philadelphia, PA

"Athlete Recovery: Foundational Knowledge for the Athletic Trainer"

(2022) RMATA Clinical Symposium and Business Meeting  Albuquerque, New Mexico

“Principles of Rehabilitation with Lab” & “Foot and Ankle Injuries” & “Foundations Lab – Sport-Related Concussion Assessment Tests”

(2022) SEATA (Southeast Athletic Trainers Association) Athletic Training Student Symposium  

Patents (1)

Materials and methods for enhancing muscle performance and recovery from fatigue


2000 The subject invention pertains to compositions and methods for enhancing muscle performance and recovery from fatigue in humans and animals. In a specific embodiment, the unique formulation is a glycine and L-arginine monohydrochloride salt of alphaketoisocaproic acid calcium (GAKIC).

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