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Ill. Sports Equipment Company: Helmets Can’t Prevent Concussions

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Brain

CBS St. Louis (con't)

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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - Pro football great Tony Dorsett is speaking out about the brain injuries he suffered while playing but a helmet maker is saying helmets can’t actually prevent concussions.

Litchfield, Illinois-based Schutt Sports makes helmets for several high schools in the Metro East. Marketing Director Glen Beckman says though helmets can protect the skull, there is growing evidence that they don’t protect against concussions.

“There are so many factors that can cause concussions that helmets do nothing about and so that’s why we don’t particularly think that there’s any credibility to a claim that one helmet reduces the risk of concussion over another helmet,” Beckman says.

Anyone who journeys to Schutt Sports’ website is met with a disclaimer before they can continue. In bold, capital letters the disclaimer states “NO HELMET SYSTEM CAN PROTECT YOU FROM SERIOUS BRAIN AND/OR NECK INJURIES INCLUDING PARALYSIS OR DEATH. TO AVOID THESE RISKS, DO NOT ENGAGE IN THE SPORT OF FOOTBALL.”

Below the warning, users are asked to check a box indicating they have read it and understand.

According to Beckman, head rotation during a hit and genetic predisposition are bigger factors in concussions than helmets.

Dorsett, 59, spoke recently about his battles with chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Dorsett told ESPN that he gets lost while driving his daughters to soccer games and has battled with emotional issues and thoughts of suicide.

“I’m one of those guys, my quality of life is deteriorating,” he says.

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