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Author Notes:

Declan Patton, pattonda@chop.edu

The authors thank members of the research team for their contributions to data collection and analysis: Ronni Kessler, Fairuz Mohammed, Shelly Sharma, Ari Fish, Katie Simms and Valerie Lallo. In addition, the authors thank the students and parents from the Shipley School for their participation and appreciate the support from the Shipley School administration and athletic department: Michael Turner, Steve Piltch, Mark Duncan, Katelyn Taylor, Dakota Carroll, Kimberly Shaud and Kayleigh Jenkins.

Disclosure: No author declares a conflict of interest.


Research Funding:

The current study was funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the National Institute of Neurologic Disorders and Stroke of the National Institutes of Health (R01NS097549). The content of this systematic review is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the Pennsylvania Department of Health and/or the National Institutes of Health.


  • biomechanics
  • concussion
  • head impact sensor
  • injury prevention
  • soccer

Non-header impact exposure and kinematics of male youth soccer players


Journal Title:

Biomedical Sciences Instrumentation


Volume 57, Number 2


, Pages 106-113

Type of Work:

Article | Post-print: After Peer Review


Previous studies have investigated the head impact kinematics of purposeful heading in youth soccer; however, less than a third of all head injuries in youth soccer have been found to involve ball contact. The aim of the current study was to identify the head impact kinematics and exposure not associated with purposeful heading of the ball in male youth soccer. Headband-mounted sensors were used to monitor the head kinematics of male junior varsity and middle school teams during games. Video analysis of sensor-recorded events was used to code impact mechanism, surface and site. Junior varsity players had non-header impact rates of 0.28 per athlete-exposure (AE) and 0.37 per player-hour (PH), whereas middle school players had relatively lower non-header impact rates of 0.16 per AE and 0.25 per PH. Such impact rates fell within the large range of values reported by previous studies, which is likely affected by sensor type and recording trigger threshold. The most common non-header impact mechanism in junior varsity soccer was player contact, whereas ball-to-head was the most common non-header impact mechanism in middle school soccer. Non-header impacts for junior varsity players had median peak kinematics of 31.0 g and 17.4 rad/s. Non-header impacts for middle school players had median peak kinematics of 40.6 g and 16.2 rad/s. For non-header impacts, ball impacts to the rear of the head the highest peak kinematics recorded by the sensor. Such data provide targets for future efforts in injury prevention, such as officiating efforts to control player-to-player contact.
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