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Helmets Don’t Prevent Concussions

from the CP at TSN,

Most helmets are designed to do one thing well: Prevent catastrophic head injuries.

And they do.

As for stopping concussions, that’s more of a work in progress.

Hoshizaki said that helmets are constructed to shield players from linear impacts, such as when a player falls backward and smacks his head on the ice.

But his research has shown that most concussions occur through what’s called angular acceleration, where a player suddenly turns into a big hit. That’s what happened to Crosby, who took an abrupt shoulder to the side of the head against Washington on New Year’s Day.

In his next game, Crosby was checked into the boards (more of a linear impact but his brain may have been still recovering, Hoshizaki said).

“Can the helmet do better? Yes,” said Hoshizaki, whose lab tests around 5,000 impacts a year involving football and hockey helmets, along with those used in Alpine skiing. “But they will never prevent concussions, just help decrease the risk of concussions.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Hockey Equipment, | KK Hockey | Permalink



I alway felt that if hockey players wore their chin straps tighter the helmets would offer much more protection.  Does a football player’s chin strap hang 2 inches below is chin? No way. But look at how many hockey players chin straps are hanging well below their chins.

Posted by MissK from Tampa on 09/29/11 at 10:44 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

Heh…not even Messier’s much-touted helmet won’t do much against concussions, I’ll wager. It’s all about players throwing themselves around like human cannonballs thanks to their padding covered in plastic.

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 09/29/11 at 11:43 PM ET

hiero4life's avatar

It would help if they strapped it on, and wore it correctly.

Posted by hiero4life from anywhere i am on 09/30/11 at 12:08 AM ET

Navarath's avatar

I bet they help a little.

Posted by Navarath on 09/30/11 at 09:37 AM ET

Evilpens's avatar

No the concussion is caused by the Brain being slammed against the skull! It is the force of the hit, which unless you outlaw checking, concussions will never stop

Posted by Evilpens on 09/30/11 at 10:32 AM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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