2005 – AFL Tribunal system revamped
AFL Tribunal system revamped with Match Review Panel (later Match Review Officer) appointed prioritising player health and safety.
2006 - Inaugural AFL Concussion Management Guidelines
Inaugural AFL Concussion Management Guidelines developed with the AFL Doctors Association and introduced (updated periodically until 2015 and annually afterwards, later also applying to AFLW)
2007 - Prohibition
Prohibition introduced on bumping a player front-on with head over the ball and stricter stance against head-high bumps.
2010 - Specific guidelines
Specific guidelines to address the risk of head-high contact from dangerous tackles introduced.
2011 - Community Football Concussion Management Guidelines
Community Football Concussion Management Guidelines released (and updated in 2013, 2017 and 2021) supported with education materials.
2013 - National Conferences
National Conferences organised by the AFL Doctors Association (with the AFL) on concussion management (2013, 2017) to share learnings from International Concussion in Sport Group
2013 – Concussion substitute
Concussion substitute introduced to allow a player being assessed for concussion to be replaced.
2014 – Hawk-Eye
Hawk-Eye match vision review technology adopted for use by AFL (and later) AFLW Club doctors to assesses in-match concussion and head trauma.
2016 – Tribunal guidelines amended
Tribunal Guidelines amended to broaden the application of the “potential to cause serious injury” sanction loading.
2018 – HeadCheck App
HeadCheck App introduced to assist/guide concussion management for junior players (adult version later launched).
2019 – Strict liability introduced
Strict liability introduced for players choosing to bump resulting in forceful head-high contact.
2019 – CSx Online Platform
CSx Online Platform introduced to record all data for concussion incidence and to facilitate auditing and compliance reviews
2020 – Concussion “Spotters”
Concussion “Spotters” appointed to monitor all AFL and AFLW matches from the AFL Review Centre and in communication with Club Doctors in-match.
2021 – Mandatory minimum recovery
Mandatory minimum recovery Concussion Management Guidelines introduce mandatory minimum 12-day post-concussion recovery and rehabilitation period for all levels of Australian Football.
2021 – Medical substitutes introduced
Medical substitutes introduced for AFL where player medically unfit to continue can be replaced from an additional interchange player.
2021 – Key AFL appointments
Key AFL appointments made - Head of Concussion Innovation and Research and Head of Concussion and Healthcare Governance
2021 – New concussion governance
New concussion governance structure adopted by AFL with appointment of Concussion Steering Group and Working Groups, working closely with Concussion Scientific Committee.
2022 – McCrory Report released
The AFL received and published the report of the independent review it commissioned into Associate Professor Paul McCrory and allegations against him relating to plagiarism and other issues connected with research and medical work on sport-related concussion in the AFL.
2023 – What the AFL is doing
The AFL released its Strategic Plan for Sport-Related Concussion Management in Australian Football for the current period through to 2026 - click here. An industry Concussion Steering Group will also continue after being established over 12 months ago as part of the AFL’s commitment to best-practice governance structure.