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Research Papers

Laboratory Validation of a Wearable Sensor for the Measurement of Head Acceleration in Men's and Women's Lacrosse

[+] Author and Article Information
Jessica M. Buice

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
University of Michigan-Dearborn,
4901 Evergreen Road,
Dearborn, MI 48128
e-mail: jbuice@umich.edu

Amanda O. Esquivel

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
University of Michigan-Dearborn,
4901 Evergreen Road,
Dearborn, MI 48128
e-mail: aoe@umich.edu

Christopher J. Andrecovich

Department of Biomedical Engineering,
Wayne State University,
818 W Hancock Street,
Detroit, MI 48201
e-mail: candrecovich@wayne.edu

Manuscript received September 8, 2017; final manuscript received May 2, 2018; published online June 21, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Barclay Morrison.

J Biomech Eng 140(10), 101004 (Jun 21, 2018) (8 pages) Paper No: BIO-17-1399; doi: 10.1115/1.4040311 History: Received September 08, 2017; Revised May 02, 2018

Mild traumatic brain injuries, or concussions, can result from head acceleration during sports. Wearable sensors like the GForceTrackerTM (GFT) can monitor an athlete's head acceleration during play. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the accuracy of the GFT for use in boys' and girls' lacrosse. The GFT was mounted to either a strap connected to lacrosse goggles (helmetless) or a helmet. The assembly was fit to a Hybrid III (HIII) headform instrumented with sensors and impacted multiple times at different velocities and locations. Measurements of peak linear acceleration and angular velocity were obtained from both systems and compared. It was found that a large percent error between the GFT and headform system existed for linear acceleration (29% for helmetless and 123% for helmet) and angular velocity (48% for helmetless and 17% for helmet). Linear acceleration data transformed to the center of gravity (CG) of the head still produced errors (47% for helmetless and 76% for helmet). This error was substantially reduced when correction equations were applied based on impact location (3–22% for helmetless and 3–12% for helmet impacts at the GFT location and transformed to the CG of the head). Our study has shown that the GFT does not accurately calculate linear acceleration or angular velocity at the CG of the head; however, reasonable error can be achieved by correcting data based on impact location.

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Figures

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Placement of the sensor device inside the helmet and test setup

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Helmetless peak resultant linear acceleration data for all impacts (top left) and separated by impact location (top right) and peak resultant angular velocity for all impacts (bottom left) and separated by impact location (bottom right)

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Helmetless peak resultant linear acceleration data for all impacts (top left) and separated by impact location (top right) after transforming GFT data to the CG of the headform and peak resultant linear acceleration data for all helmeted impacts (bottom left) and separated by impact location (bottom right) after transforming GFT data to the CG of the headform

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Peak resultant linear acceleration data for all helmeted impacts (top left) and separated by impact location (top right) and peak resultant angular velocity for all impacts (bottom left) and separated by impact location (bottom right)

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