Concussions are a growing contemporary issue in sports. From films, newspaper headlines, to magazine articles few Americans are unfamiliar with the negative effects caused by repeated blows to the head. Rugby and football are notorious for frequent head injuries, but new technology can help prevent brain damage caused by such impacts.
Samsung and the Australia government brought together a team of scientist to help identify, prevent, and treat head injuries in rugby and football. They came up with a device called the BrainBand, The BrainBand is a device, like a headband, that the athlete wears with sensors on the back that can detail the force of an impact. If there is a blow to the head, the band will light up yellow, orange, or red. Yellow signifies that there was a significant impact, orange that the player should be checked up on, and red means they definitely should be removed from the game. This brainband is able to send data to devices such as smartphones, tablets used by coaches and medics, and even smart watches used by referees.
The big thing about all the data transmitted by the brainband is who makes the final call on an injury. Historically, a coach or medic will ask a player how they felel, which yields unhelpful results cause players typically lie to continue playing. Now, the coaching staff, referee and, medics can all see impact data to help determine weather or not they should let someone continue to play. In football, 50% of the time, injured players go right back to playing after an injury without missing a game. Now, even if the coaching staff and the player are being negligent, a referee can make the final call and back up his decision with data provided by the brainband.
One of the few downsides to wearing the braiband in rugby is pride. Unlike football, rugby requires no padding and many players pride themselves on this aspect. A headband lighting up when they get hit, even though it is for their own benefit, could possibly be resisted by many rugby players. Football players, on the other hand, are required to wear helmets so brain bands could potentially be built in. Either way I certainly anticipate some resistance.
Being on the rugby team at Loyola new concussion technology could potentially affect me greatly. The article did not mention how much the brainband cost, but how high tech it is implies it would be pricey. The video the article provided made them look kind of fashionable so I could see myself wearing them. Either way, it is good to see a multinational cooperation like Samsung tackling a big issue like concussions.
Chant, Ryan. "Samsung Is Now Getting Involved With Concussion Issues In Sports." SportTechie. SportTechie, 28 Mar. 2016. Web. 28 Mar. 2016. <http://www.sporttechie.com/2016/03/28/samsung-brainband/>.
Smith, Stephen. "Head Injuries in Rugby vs. Football - Brain Injury Law Center." Brain Injury Law Center. Brain Injury Law Center, 16 Oct. 2014. Web. 28 Mar. 2016. <http://www.brain-injury-law-center.com/latest-news/head-injuries-rugby-vs-football/>.