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Comparison of head impact measurements via an instrumented mouthguard and an anthropometric testing device
Sports Engineering, Volume: 23, Issue: 1
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The purpose of this study was to determine and compare the efficacy of head impact measurements via an electronic sensor framework, embedded within a mouthguard, against an anthropometric testing device. Development of the former is in response to the growing issue of head impacts and concussion in...
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Springer Science and Business Media LLC
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The purpose of this study was to determine and compare the efficacy of head impact measurements via an electronic sensor framework, embedded within a mouthguard, against an anthropometric testing device. Development of the former is in response to the growing issue of head impacts and concussion in rugby union. Testing was conducted in a vehicle safety laboratory using a standard impact protocol utilising the headforms of anthropometric testing devices. The headforms were subjected to controlled front and side impacts. For each impact, the linear acceleration and rotational velocity was measured over a 104-ms interval at a frequency of 1 kHz. The magnitude of peak linear acceleration and peak rotational velocity was determined from the measured time-series traces and statistically compared. The peak linear acceleration and rotational velocity had intraclass correlation coefficients of 0.95 and 0.99, respectively. The root-mean-square error between the measurement systems was 4.3 g with a standard deviation of 3.5 g for peak linear acceleration and 0.7 rad/s with a standard deviation of 0.4 rad/s for rotational velocity. Bland and Altman analysis indicated a systematic bias of 2.5 g and − 0.5 rad/s and limits of agreement (1.96 × standard deviation) of ± 13.1 g and ± 1.25 rad/s for the instrumented mouthguard. These results provide the basis on which the instrumented mouthguard can be further developed for deployment and application within professional rugby, with a view to accurately and reliably quantify head collision dynamics.