New study says leather helmets as effective as modern materials -

New study says leather helmets as effective as modern materials

In many cases, newer is often better. But that may not be so when it comes to football helmets and concussions.

A new study shows that old-fashioned leather football helmets are often just as good as modern-day helmets when it comes to protecting players from common hits.

Cleveland Clinic's Dr. Adam Bartsch led the research and says the results raise a red flag.

"Knowing that a leather helmet and a modern helmet are sometimes comparable in those hits, that's concerning for long-term impact for dosage accumulation," says Dr. Bartsch. "So many years of hits over a career, a season, might cause long-term damage."

Researchers put leather helmets and modern-day helmets to the test. Using crash test dummies, they simulated collisions at speeds comparable to most on-field hits at the collegiate and high school levels. Results show that leather helmets may offer similar or better protection against head injuries when compared to modern-day helmets.

Dr. Bartsch doesn't think players should go back to wearing leather helmets, but says current helmet design and safety standards are based on preventing skull fracture, not concussion, and need updating.

"This is such an interesting finding that there actually may be a reason to examine helmet designs other than the current hard shell with a face mask and really stiff interior padding, and also to examine how we're testing these helmets," he says.

Up to 40 percent of football players experience a concussion each year. Concussions are the leading cause of brain damage in sports. Complete results can be found in the Journal of Neurosurgeon.

Copyright 2012 America Now. All rights reserved.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Exclusive: Photos from Inside Anthony Sowell's Home

    Inside Look: Exclusives Photos Paint Disturbing Scene Inside Home of Anthony Sowell

    Saturday, May 1 2010 11:19 AM EDT2010-05-01 16:19:26 GMT
    GRAPHIC PICTURES: CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - It was one of the most gruesome sights in Cleveland crime history.
  • Six deadly foods for dogs

    Six deadly foods for dogs

    Every pet owner knows a dog can get into just about anything around the house. One woman found that out the hard way when her dog ate a bunch of grapes! Turns out, that's one of the most dangerous foods
    Every pet owner knows a dog can get into just about anything around the house. But these common snacks could be fatal for Fido.
  • Physicians warn against giving melatonin to children

    Physicians warn against giving melatonin to children

    Parents desperate to get their troubled sleepers to bed are turning to synthetic melatonin, which is a supplement sold over the counter. But expert warn it could have adverse effects on child development.
    Many adults turn to sleep aids like melatonin, but now more parents are giving them to their kids, too. We talked to physicians to see what they had to say about how it could affect your child's development.
Powered by WorldNow