New tool helps protect youth football players from brain damage

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) – Young football athletes take a huge risk of injury each time they step on the field. That’s why engineering professors at Purdue University have created a sensor to go inside football helmets to count the number of hits a player receives.

This helmet sensor can potentially lower the chances of damaging the way the brain functions, monitor how often a student is hit, as well as review the type of impact.

“Young athletes can experience damage to the brain without having any symptoms at all,” explained Thomas Talavage, a bio-mechanical engineering professor at Purdue.

He said young football players should only take 70-90 hits per week, anything higher can mean a huge risk for serious complications of the brain.

Thousands of young football athletes suffer from head injuries each year, some causing concussions which can have damaging effects on overall brain functionality.

Central Catholic’s head coach Kevin O’Shea said every contact sport has risks.

“Which is why we do all we can to protect our players,” said O’Shea.

This includes buying the best equipment available to stay away from head injuries, and limiting the amount of hits to game time only.

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