Rugear – Jackie, Jennifer, Paola, Stephanie

Statement of Problem:

Many sports are played that can lead to brain injury or other injuries, one of these sports is Rugby. In a game of Rugby the players do not wear any equipment, they wear, sometimes, but rarely a helmet. Due to the fact they wear little to nothing they are prone to many injuries. Between 5-25% of rugby injuries are head injuries, including concussions. They don’t make it a rule to wear a helmet during games so most of the time they don’t wear them. Of the head injuries, 44% are concussions. Rugby is very popular amongst males but is now becoming an interest to female athletes. Many other injuries happen too since they have no other equipment.

 

Our company Rugear,  will use our biomedical expertise to create innovative gear for rugby players. Based on our research we learned that the players need protection especially for the head, the sport is common to football if not more dangerous due to not wearing gear. We are to make a helmet and possibly other necessary gear for the players to be safe during their games. Head injuries can be extremely dangerous at times and it is necessary to be careful.

 

When a rugby player gets a concussion, most of the time it affects the frontal lobe (1) and the occipital lobe (2). Whenever a player hits his/her head with a hard blow, it makes the brain move inside of the head and gets bruised in the affected area.

This is a closer look of what happens inside of your head if you have a concussion.

800px-Concussion_Anatomy_original_original_crop_exactConcussion: A traumatic brain injury that changes the way your brain functions. This can lead to bruising  and swelling of the brain, tearing of blood vessels and injury to nerves, causing the concussion. The brain is made up of soft tissue and is protected by blood and spinal fluid. When the skull is jolted too fast or is impacted by something, the brain shifts and hits against the skull. Most concussions are mild and can be treated with appropriate care, but left untreated, it can be deadly (captions provided in case image is blurry).

We are dedicated to providing a safer environment for all rugby players. It’s common that rugby players get  head injuries due to constant blows in the head and it’s our goal to prevent more of these injuries. During our research, we found out that there have already been many products made to help solve this solution but they’re not perfect. In order to help prevent these injuries, we plan to improve a helmet that’s already been made and it’s called the Security Posture Alarm for a Helmet. It’s a helmet designed to improve the posture of an athlete’s head. If it senses the head in an incorrect posture it will make a noise to signal the player to improve their posture in order to prevent an injury. While this invention can help prevent some of these injuries, there are still some improvements that can be made. We’ve come up with the idea to add volume adjustments and a little more padding inside the helmet in case the alarm is ignored. It’ll make the blow less effective on the brain.

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