Helmets at the Center of Battle to Tame Concussions

No football season in memory has begun with as much emphasis on helmet safety at nearly all levels of the game as the 2012 campaign. Pop Warner Football has banned head-to-head hits.

A new high school and college rule requires any player who loses his helmet on the field when the ball is live to sit out the next play. And NFL leaders are in talks with the U.S. Army to possibly equip players' helmets with the kind of blast sensors used in soldiers' helmets in an attempt to gather new data on head injuries.

Each of these moves addresses the evolving role helmets are playing in the war on concussions. The implication of the new rule developed by the National Federation of State High School Associations and the NCAA is that players are becoming separated from their helmets at an alarming rate because not enough of them know how to properly fasten their helmets. Models designed to minimize blows to the head won't work if they're not fitted correctly and worn properly.

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