The good old days of measuring the ‘biggest hit’ on Friday night footy by how much claret comes streaming out a bloke’s nose might be over.
Minneapolis-based tech outfit Prevent Biometrics have partnered with neurosurgeons from reputed medical researcher Cleveland Clinic to launch a mouthguard featuring an impact-monitoring microchip.
The chip measures linear and rotational acceleration, location, direction and count of each head impact to provide an immediate player assessment and diagnosis.
No word yet on whether it makes the individual wearing it smarter, but we’d love to hear a Jarryd Hayne press conference with him wearing one to find out. No, take that back… we really wouldn’t.
Prevent says players who stay in the game after head trauma take nearly twice as long to recover as athletes who leave the game immediately. So when it comes to concussions, “immediate detection and full recovery are key to preventing long-term damage”.
We imagine innovation like this would be music to the ears of Australian football codes like the AFL, NRL and Rugby Australia, who regularly face criticism of their loose concussion protocols and enforcement.
The Prevent Biometrics mouthguard, with its real-time monitoring technology that sends data directly to the smartphone of a team trainer, for example, would give Leagues (and teams) immediate, objective data to make a quick, medically-informed decision.
If every player in League was mandated to wear this sort of tech, imagine the data sports scientists could harvest and turn into concussion risk profiles, impact thresholds and other insights that would improve player safety from the grassroots through to the elite level.
Living in Sydney his entire life, Geoff has always had a close eye on technology. Through school and immediately after, tech held his focus. Attending University later in life, Geoff began his IT career immediately after leaving high school and has been in the industry ever since. In his spare time he launched a YouTube channel focused on consumer tech that had millions of views. This led to work on community radio talking tech every week and has now stepped him into the studios of 2GB / 4BC every Saturday helping people with tech problems and reviewing the latest gadgets.
When Geoff is looking away from the screen he can be found holding a glass of red wine, spending time with friends and/or watching the Formula 1.