By Thad Brown.
The 83rd Mission Bouts looked just like the previous 82. From the outside.
Underneath the head gear of each fighter is a small headband containing an even smaller device. Its called the Linx Impact Assessment System.
“It tells you from what direction you’ve been hit. It tells you how hard you’ve been hit. How far your head moved. What speed your head moved. And the power of the punch,” said sophomore Tim McMahon.
The device was created by a local company called Black Box Biometrics. Data from each blow is fed almost instantaneously to a smartphone or tablet app. It’s accessbile by coaches, parents and the fighters themselves.
“It’s not gonna replace the coach’s eyes,” said longtime Aquinas coach Dom Arioli. “But it’s gonna help a coach to understand the number of impacts and the accumulation of blows. Then you start looking at trends with the kids and what kids need to sit out.”
“It made me feel a lot better,” said senior Chris Mack. “I already had trust in the coaches and the refs and paramedics were always on call when we were fighting. The headband was just an extra safety net.”
Creators stress the Linx IAS is not a medical device, but it does provide a brand new wealth of information about the amount of trauma being sustained by the head.
“It’s like a fore-warning,” McMahon said. “You got hit hard two times. Maybe you should watch out before you actually, seriously get hurt.”
“Sometimes, you might get interrupted. You don’t catch all the punches that get thrown,” Arioli said. “Then, I could look and I could say this young man or young lady has been getting hit a lot.”
It’s already improving the reputation of boxing, at least among students at Aquinas.
“Before we didn’t really have any evidence like ‘oh, it’s safe, you should try it, it’s a great program ‘,” said senior Sabrina Basile. “But, now we have something to back it up.”
The boxing looks the same, but it feels a whole lot different.
AQ Boxing Tracks Head Trauma With New Device | rochesterhomepage.net