Huntington North football using technology to make the game safer

HUNTINGTON, Ind. (WANE) – The Huntington North football program is on the cutting edge of new technology designed to make football safer. This year the Vikings spent $5,400 installing Riddell’s InSite Impact Response System into 36 of their helmets.

Huntington North is the first high school in Northeast Indiana to use this technology. Manchester University has been using it for the past three years.

InSite is a three-part system designed to monitor head impact. Five battery-operated sensors are installed underneath the lining of the helmet that measure impact severity and frequency. A hit is signaled as severe based on a threshold that takes into account a player’s age and position. When a hit reaches that threshold a signal goes off on a handheld alert monitor that athletic trainers will hold on the sidelines. The device will tell the trainer who was hit and at what time. The trainer will then take the player off the field and evaluate the injury. The system also comes with a software suite that can help coaching staffs keep track of players who suffer multiple head impacts.

So far the response at Huntington North has been positive. Although no one has suffered a substantial head injury head coach Rick Burnau has been able to use the device as a learning experience. In practice a running back’s helmet went off. After evaluating the player it was determined he did not have a bad head injury but did use his head to run through a lineman. Since the Vikings’ record their practices Coach Burnau was able to show the player what he did wrong and how to correct it.

Each of the units cost $150 and can accomodate up to 150 players. Riddell sales representative Erich Kennerk says other high schools in the area have expressed interest in getting InSite.

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