Tag Archives: sensor

Helmet Add-Ons May Not Lower Concussion Risk in Athletes

Football helmet add-ons such as outer soft-shell layers, spray treatments, helmet pads and fiber sheets may not significantly help lower the risk of concussions in athletes, according to a recently released study that will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s 67th Annual Meeting in Washington, DC, April 18 to 25, 2015.

“Our study suggests that despite many products targeted at reducing concussions in players, there is no magic concussion prevention product on the market at this time,” said study author John Lloyd, PhD, of BRAINS, Inc. in San Antonio, Fla., and a member of the American Academy of Neurology.

Researchers modified the standard drop test system, approved by the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment, by using a crash test dummy head and neck to more realistically simulate head impact. Sensors were placed in the dummy’s head to measure linear and angular rotational responses to helmet impacts at 10, 12 and 14 miles per hour.

Using this device, BRAINS researchers evaluated four football helmet add-ons: Guardian Cap, UnEqual Technologies’ Concussion Reduction Technology, Shockstrips and Helmet Glide. Riddell Revolution Speed and Xenith X1 football helmets were outfitted with each of these add-ons and impacted five times from drop heights of 1.0, 1.5 and 2.0 meters. Linear acceleration, angular velocity and angular accelerations of the head were measured in response to impacts.

The study found that compared to helmets without the add-ons, those fitted with the Guardian Cap, Concussion Reduction Technology and Shockstrips reduced linear accelerations by about 11 percent, but only reduced angular accelerations by 2 percent, while Helmet Glide was shown to have no effect.

“These findings are important because angular accelerations are believed to be the major biomechanical forces involved in concussion,” said Lloyd. “Few add-on products have undergone even basic biomechanical evaluation. Hopefully, our research will lead to more rigorous testing of helmets and add-ons.”

The study was supported by BRAINS, Inc. and Seeing Stars Foundation.

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Triax Technologies and Washington Youth Soccer Champion Head Impact Monitoring

Triax Technologies Inc and Washington Youth Soccer have announced a long-term partnership to track and assess head impacts among top level youth players. Findings from the large scale collection of data will be used to identify trends and potential risks to inform training protocols, which will be publically shared to encourage best practices.

Players from the Washington Youth Soccer Elite Player Development (EPD) program (U12-U18) will wear the Triax Technologies Smart Impact Monitors (SIM™) as they compete in the prestigious US Youth Soccer Region IV Olympic Development Program (ODP) Championships January 8–11 in Phoenix, AZ, and will continue throughout their careers with Washington Youth Soccer.

Triax SIM™ devices are worn in comfortable, unobtrusive headbands to record head impacts, and transmit data in real time from the field to a smart phone or tablet on the sideline. This cutting edge technology allows players to track up to 180 individual head impacts measuring the G–force of direct hits and jarring through linear and rotational measures.

The SIM allows coaches, trainers and parents to identify when a player has experienced a significant head impact or a series of repetitive “sub–concussive” hits that might require altering technique or removal from play for assessment.

“After my recent visit with some of the Washington players, it’s exciting to see the state EDP program taking this important step in safety,” said Abby Wambach, U.S. Women’s National Team and all-time high-goal scorer. “I encourage these players to use the Triax SIM in their training beyond this tournament, just as I am doing in my own training heading into this summer’s World Cup.”

The first device of its kind to be Hit Count® certified in all sports categories as defined by the Sports Legacy Institute, Triax SIM devices are currently being used or evaluated for use with 18 institutions and universities around the country as part of various research projects. These studies will help to better understand sports related concussions and the impact of sub–concussive hits. And now, the data from the Washington Youth Soccer players will add to the new and emerging learnings about head impacts, and will be specifically used to educate players and coaches.

“The benefits gained from this partnership will continue far beyond the tournament,” said Dale Hollingsworth, CEO and Founder of Triax Technologies. “Our goal is to improve player safety. And now, with Washington Youth Soccer, we are championing new research that will lead to safer training and more informed decision-making.”

Abby Wambach Encouraging Young Players

Abby Wambach Encouraging Young Players

The Washington Youth Soccer EPD players began wearing the Triax SIM devices during trainings leading into the US Youth Soccer Region IV ODP Championships, where the top players from each Western state will compete. The players will continue to wear the devices in competition throughout the event and in trainings and future competitions. In addition to providing valuable information on the players during play, the SIM data gathered from these players will also be used to evaluate trends and glean lessons to foster better understanding of head impact risk and management.

“For the last seven years, Washington Youth Soccer has been driving change in how head impacts are regarded by our nation’s youth sports communities. Now, with the new ability to accurately quantify impacts, we are able to help define where adjustments could be made to play or technique for player safety,” states Washington Youth Soccer CEO, Terry Fisher. “We are committed to providing young athletes with the safest environment possible and look forward to seeing the findings these data will provide.”

Washington Youth Soccer has been a leader in implementing proper concussion protocols and awareness, driving adoption throughout US Youth Soccer, and building support at the congressional level. This partnership with Triax Technologies is a natural extension of the organizations ongoing commitment to player safety. For more information on Triax Technologies, visit TriaxTec.com.

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Triax Becomes First Company to Gain Hit Count® Certification for Soccer, Football, Ice Hockey, Lacrosse and Other Sports

The Sports Legacy Institute (SLI), a non-profit concussion education, advocacy and research organization, has announced that sports technology company Triax’s SIM device is the first head impact sensor device to pass every Hit Count® Certification category. The Triax SIM device can track an athlete’s Hit Count® in helmets for football, ice hockey, and men’s lacrosse, as well as for unhelmeted sports like soccer and women’s lacrosse, according to SLI.

“The Sports Legacy Institute has led the creation of the Hit Count® Program, including a Certification that parents, athletes, coaches, schools and sports leagues can rely on to select a head impact sensor system. At Triax, our first priority is to help protect athletes,” said Dale Hollingsworth, co-founder and CEO of Triax. “We are very proud to be the first system to gain Hit Count® certification for ALL the sports that SLI assesses. Triax has worked closely with leading researchers into concussion in sports to create a wireless sensor system that is highly effective yet affordable, convenient to use and comfortable to wear. We are confident that providing coaches and parents with an accurate Hit Count® will be a critical step in creating the safest possible environment for athletes.”

Inspired by Pitch Counts in youth baseball and Step Counts in fitness, the SLI Hit Count® Program is a simple, actionable way for parents and coaches to reduce risk of concussion by monitoring head impacts, and then minimizing head impacts through data-driven behavior change. Hit Count® Certified devices allow parents and coaches to track Hits, defined as impacts exceeding 20g’s of linear acceleration. Certified devices have passed a test developed with the University of Ottawa’s Neurotrauma Impact Laboratory, under the leadership of Dr. Blaine Hoshizaki, to assess the accuracy of sensors at the 20g Hit Count® threshold. The test does not assess the accuracy of sensors at other thresholds.

Tracking an athlete’s Hit Count® creates opportunities to change behavior through identifying improper techniques, as well as provides feedback to help coaches modify practice schedules to keep their team Hit Count® low. Hit Count® data will soon be accompanied by a Hit Count® score, which will tell athletes and coaches how their Hit Count® compares to their peers, according to SLI.

“Research using sensor devices has revealed that each year in the United States, over 1.5 billion impacts to the head occur in youth and high school football players,” said SLI Founding Executive Director Chris Nowinski. “Studies show most hits are unnecessary and occur in practice. By utilizing Hit Count® Certified devices as a teaching tool for coaches and a behavior modification tool for athletes, we could eliminate over 500 million head impacts next season, and the countless concussions those Hits would have caused.”

The Shipley School (Bryn Mawr, PA) has purchased Triax sensors for all their Upper School contact sport athletes and will be monitoring each team and athlete’s Hit Count®. “We are committed to the safety of our students. By embracing this new technology, we believe we can prevent concussions by minimizing the number of Hits, as well as improve our ability to recognize concussions by monitoring significant impacts. Knowing Hit Counts will allow us to make data-driven decisions on how to more safely teach and practice sports, as well as provide better individualized coaching,” said Shipley’s Head of School Steve Piltch.

Triax (TriaxTec.com) is only the second company to pass the Hit Count® Certification and the first to pass for all four sports categories. “Head sensor devices involve complex technology, and some sensors on the market today may not be accurate,” said Dr. Blaine Hoshizaki. “Hit Count® Certification, the first and only sensor certification in the marketplace, gives the consumer and research scientists the confidence that the sensors are accurately measuring 20g impacts, providing simple and actionable data.”

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