A topic that continues to get attention in the press is that of concussions. More and more people are taking into consideration the dangers associated with certain sports and how multiple hits to the head affects people long term. All over the place you see how to tell if you or someone you know has a concussion or the best type of care if you receive a concussion. Something you don’t see very much is improved equipment focused at reducing concussions. I’m not talking about increased peripheral vision, or more padding in helmets like most companies boast, I’m talking about actual, game changing improvement.
We live in a time where technology is constantly evolving yet the general concept of the helmet for many sports has remained the same, other than the use of higher quality plastics and foams. It’s not like they have changed as drastic as the change from flip phone compared to the iphone, that is until now. A company called MIPS has been pushing the progression of helmet technology. MIPS does not manufacture helmets, they manufacture helmet liners that are then incorporated into your favorite helmet’s shell.
MIPS has created a liner that moves with the person’s head. This may sound like an inconvenience but in reality this is what helps prevent concussions. Most helmets are tested by only dropping them vertically, if you watch any type of contact sport it becomes apparent that most hits are not like that at all, there is always an angular or rotational component involved. MIPS took this into consideration and created a helmet liner that moves up to 15mm upon impact. The technology allows the angular or rotational force of an impact to be absorbed decreasing the strain on the brain during impact.
At the moment MIPS technology is being utilized by over 120 helmet companies ranging from biking, motorcycle racing/riding, snow sports, and equine riding. This technology is without a doubt a head above the rest, be on the lookout for MIPS technology or something similar to wind up in your children’s helmets soon.
I bet the guy getting his head ran over wishes he had a helmet with MIPS technology.