STP1552

    The Effects of Player Anticipation and Involvement on Head Impact Biomechanics in College Football Body Collisions

    Published: Jun 2014


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    Abstract

    Football accounts for 55% of all concussions in collegiate athletics, and 6.8% of all injuries in collegiate football. The two primary purposes of this study were to 1) examine the effect of body collision anticipation (anticipated vs unanticipated) and involvement (striking vs struck) on head impact biomechanics as measured by linear acceleration, rotational acceleration, and Head Impact Technology severity profile (HITsp), and 2) study the interaction between these same two factors and the location of head impact (i.e. back, front, side, or top). College football players were equipped with accelerometer-instrumented helmets (Head Impact Telemetry System) to collect head impact biomechanics during all games in a single playing season. Multiple camera views were synchronized with the head impact data, and viewable collisions (N = 1408) were evaluated using a standardized criteria rubric to assign player anticipation and involvement. Data were analyzed using separate random intercepts general mixed linear models for each dependent variable, incorporating each individual player as a repeating factor in the analyses. Our findings indicate that struck players experience greater rotational accelerations compared to the striking player, yet no differences were observed for linear acceleration or HITsp. It would appear, based on our data, that all impacts—anticipated or otherwise—produce the same mean severity. However, significant interactions between player anticipation and location of impact, as well as player involvement and location of impact, were observed for all three biomechanical measures. Anticipated collisions to the top of the head (likely indicative of a spearing mechanism) were among the most severe we observed in our study. These data are important for coaches to emphasize proper tackling techniques and skill development with their players.

    Keywords:

    concussion, football, injury prevention, kinematics, mild traumatic brain injury, sports biomechanics


    Author Information:

    Mihalik, Jason P.
    Co-Director, Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center, Dept. of Exercise and Sport Science, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC

    Moise, Katherine F.
    Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center, Dept. of Exercise and Sport Science, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC

    Ocwieja, Karen E.
    Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center, Dept. of Exercise and Sport Science, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC

    United States Olympic Committee, Lake Placid, NY

    Guskiewicz, Kevin M.
    Co-Director, Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center, Dept. of Exercise and Sport Science, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC

    Register-Mihalik, Johna K.
    Senior Research Associate, Clinical Research Unit, Emergency Services Institute, WakeMed Health and Hospitals, Raleigh, NC

    Mihalik, Jason P.
    Co-Director, Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center, Dept. of Exercise and Sport Science, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC

    Moise, Katherine F.
    Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center, Dept. of Exercise and Sport Science, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC

    Ocwieja, Karen E.
    Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center, Dept. of Exercise and Sport Science, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC

    United States Olympic Committee, Lake Placid, NY

    Guskiewicz, Kevin M.
    Co-Director, Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center, Dept. of Exercise and Sport Science, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC

    Register-Mihalik, Johna K.
    Senior Research Associate, Clinical Research Unit, Emergency Services Institute, WakeMed Health and Hospitals, Raleigh, NC


    Paper ID: STP155220120108

    Committee/Subcommittee: F08.51

    DOI: 10.1520/STP155220120108


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