Sport-Related Concussion (SRC): What Will You Do With The Truth?

The prevention of concussion in sport is not what we have been taught to believe!

In April 2020, VICIS, a football helmet company who spent millions of dollars and was at one time valued at $90 million, who introduced their football helmet in 2017, sold to another football helmet company for $2.85 million.[1] When I read this, I questioned how we have been led to believe that a football helmet is the only available protective safety equipment with the technology capable of preventing sport-related concussion (SRC). Because this is what they want us to believe! And indirectly, the NFL has supported and even promoted this narrative and paradigm of thought. 


The helmet companies have created a narrative that concussions only occur with direct contact to the helmet through the biomechanical testing of helmets. The majority of testing on helmets have focused on the kinematic measures of peak linear acceleration (PLA), peak rotational acceleration (PRA), impact duration (IMPD), and recently impact location (IMPL) has been incorporated into the mix. [2,3,4,5,6,7] It is important to note that IMPD is a key factor here as these measures are only taken during impact. The IMPD of the head/helmet is the time period when the head/helmet collides with another body. Head/helmet impacts have been recorded as having an IMPD between 5.5 and 13.7 milliseconds (ms). [8] In some way the head is still moving after impact. Therefore, the brain is moving and vulnerable for much longer than the IMPD. Intentional or unintentional the paradigm of thought is they want us to believe is that helmets protect the brain. Which is simply not the whole truth. The brain is at risk for SRC as long the head continues to move which is much longer than milliseconds. If helmets only protect during IMPD does other technology need to be investigated to protect the brain after impact?


Again, whether it is intentional or unintentional the NFL indirectly promotes and supports the narrative that helmets are the only technology available to prevent SRC. On April 20, 2021, the NFL and NFLPA released its 2021 Helmet Laboratory Testing Results ranking the VICIS ZERO2-R MATRIX, VICIS ZERO2-R TRENCH, and the VICIS ZERO2-R helmets as best performing helmets in their laboratory research tests.[9] On the same day the NFL and NFLPA released their laboratory testing results they also approved the first position-specific helmet design for offensive and defensive lineman, the VICIS ZERO2-R TRENCH. [10] And with the release of the 2021 results, Jeff Miller, NFL Executive Vice President overseeing Player Health and Safety, offered a $1 million prize for a winning helmet which improves on the performance score achieved by current top-performing helmets by more than 15%. This would mark a transformational improvement approximately five times greater than the average year.[9] As a health care professional and a consumer this raises several questions. How can the number one ranked helmet by the NFL basically go out of business if a helmet protects against concussion? And what is a 15% improvement in the performance of a helmet when we have not been informed of the % improvement in helmets over the past 10-12 years? If a 15% improvement is what is sought, then past improvements have occurred in very minimal increments.


This picture that has been painted by the helmet companies and the NFL is that the helmet is the only way to protect the brain. This is not the whole truth and believe it or not they know it! Want to know more? 



1  Innovatus Capital Partners Buys Remaining VICIS Assets.;

Andrew Cohen; April 13, 2020

2  Brain Injury Prediction: Assessing the Combined Probability of Concussion Using Linear and Rotational Head Acceleration

STEVEN ROWSON and STEFAN M. DUMA; Annals of Biomedical Engineering, Vol. 41, No. 5, May 2013

3  Head injury predictors in sports trauma – A state-of-the-art review

Fa´bio AO Fernandes and Ricardo J Alves de Sousa; Proc ImechE Part H: J Engineering in Medicine 2015, Vol. 229(8) 592–608 _ ImechE 2015

4  Head Impact Severity Measures for Evaluating Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Risk Exposure

Richard M. Greenwalda, Joseph T. Gwina, Jeffrey J. Chua, and Joseph J. Criscob a Simbex, Lebanon, New Hampshire, USA

Concussion with primary impact to the chest and the potential role of neck tension. BMJ Open Sport Exerc Med 4, e000362 (2018)

Jadischke, R., Viano, D. C., McCarthy, J. & King, A. I.

6  Youth helmet design in sports with repetitive low- and medium-energy impacts: a systematic review.  Sports Eng 20, 29–40 (2017).  Kuhn, E. N. et al. 

 7  Comparison of Impact Performance between Youth and Varsity Football Helmets. Proceedings of the ImechE 231, 374–380 (2017).  Sproule, D. W. & Rowson, S.

8  Head Impact Severity Measures for Evaluating Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Risk Exposure

Richard M. Greenwalda, Joseph T. Gwina, Jeffrey J. Chua, and Joseph J. Criscob a Simbex, Lebanon, New Hampshire, USA

9  NFL, NFLPA Release 2021 Helmet Laboratory Testing Performance ResultsPublished: Apr 20, 2021 at 01:56 PM;

10  FL, Players Association approve first position-specific helmet design for OL, DL; By Kevin Seifert; April 20, 2021, 2:09 PM