EFFECT OF IMPACT SURFACE ON EQUESTRIAN FALLS

J. Michlo Clark, Andrew Post, Thomas A. Connor, T. Blaine Hoshizaki, Michael D. Gilchrist

Abstract


This study examines the effect of impact surface on head kinematic response and maximum principal strain (MPS) for equestrian falls. A helmeted Hybrid Ill headform was dropped unrestrained onto three impact surfaces (steel, turf and sand) and three locations. Peak resultant linear acceleration, rotational acceleration and duration of the impact events were measured. A finite element brain model was used to calculate MPS. The results revealed that drops onto steel produced higher peak linear acceleration, rotational acceleration and MPS but lower impact durations than drops to turf and sand. However, despite lower MPS values, turf and sand impacts compared to steel impacts still represented a risk of concussion. This suggests that equestrian helmets standards do not properly account for the loading conditions experienced in equestrian accidents.

Keywords


Helmet; Concussion; Injury biomechanics; Head kinematics; Brain strain

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ISSN 1999-4168