Technology:

Rethinking science and rethought design

It’s what’s above the neck that counts

The brain is overlooked in sport, with the focus instead below the neck, meaning the most vulnerable and important organ in the body is left unprotected, relatively unchecked and typically only acknowledged after injury.

To protect performance and reduce rotational brain injury and neurodegenerative disease across all sports, teams, players and positions, there is a need to reduce the transmission of rotational forces to the brain.

Rotection® technology is uniquely designed to minimise the transmission of rotational forces to the brain, reducing the risk of a career-ending and/or life-changing concussion and the effects of cumulative sub-concussions.

Professional rugby player - back of head

Rotection® is a design of nine unique individual protective layers that are proven to reduce the transmission of rotational forces to the brain.

Rethinking the science

Rezon’s approach to challenging the conventional science used in protective equipment.

Rotational Forces

Rezon does not solely focus on linear forces (g-force) reduction, energy dissipation, impact control or shock absorption. Linear forces are direct straight-line forces that compress or stretch the brain within the skull. Linear force reduction is less relevant to reducing brain injury, and a dated approach compared with the latest neurological research on brain injury.

Rotational forces are the greater risk in sport and more damaging to the brain. Rotational forces twist and shear the brain from concussive and sub-concussive impacts.

Sub-Concussions

Rezon does not solely focus on concussion because it is sub-concussions that are more frequent in sport. The frequency of sub-concussions is 500 times that of concussions, the forces received to the head for a sub-concussion are 2-3 times less, and a player does not get any symptoms of sub-concussion. Head to head, ground, ball, knee, post impacts all create sub-concussions. Multiple sub-concussions over time damage brain cells and tear the tiny vessels around the nerves in the brain, creating abnormal inflammatory processes, which eventually become harmful. This is the start of the process causing CTE, whereby toxic tau protein in the brain is very gradually killing brain cells.

Sub-concussions are the greater risk in sport and more damaging to the brain.

Rezon Halos protective layers

Rezon works with the leading global experts who understand the mechanics of brain injury and the physicality of the brain. This embraces the areas of biomechanics, neuroscience, detection, diagnosis and provision of the latest treatments for conditions affecting the brain, especially in respect to traumatic brain injury in contact sports. Together we have developed the world’s most advanced and technically superior solution to reducing rotational brain injury from concussive and sub-concussive impacts.

Rotection® Technology

Rezon has developed Rotection® technology to reduce the transmission of rotational forces to the brain from concussive and sub-concussive impacts.

Rotection® technology is made-up of nine independent protective layers. When the layers move over each other they reduce the transmission, or passing through, of rotational forces to the brain. Linear forces are also reduced.

Rotational forces from a head impact cause damage to the brain at three points:

  • under the impact force to the skull,
  • in the opposite side of the brain from the received impact as the brain is being squeezed and;
  • when the brain comes to a final stop and rotates with deep white matter brain injury happening.

Rotection® technology reduces rotational forces from the first impact point, meaning the subsequent rotational forces become smaller and the rotation of the brain is less, with reduced tearing of the brain cells, tiny blood vessels and brain inflammation. The video illustrates how each of the independently protective layers of the Rotection® technology move over each other by up to 30mm.

Rotection® is patent pending. UK patent application no.2107882.9. International patent application no. PCT/GB2022/051356.

Rotection® technology is proven to reduce the transmission of rotational forces by 61%, based on independent testing.

Rethought purpose

Head-worn protection in sport is typically considered in the form of helmets or headguards (scrum caps) in rugby.

Helmets are designed to protect the skull, not the brain. Helmets are tested against linear force reduction, not rotational forces. Ironically, helmets increase brain trauma by permitting more and heavier impacts to the brain. While a helmet effectively protects the skull from fractures, the brain instead receives the full impact force of the impact, resulting in concussion and sub-concussions.

Headguards (scum caps) are not protective to the skull or the brain. World Rugby have designed the approval standard for headgear in a way that limits the overprotection of players. The specifications for scrum caps are not to materially affect the way the game is played and to encourage players to protect themselves, rather than by equipment. The only injuries that headguards are intended to protect against are cuts and abrasions.

Headguards compliant with World Rugby regulation have limited linear force reducing properties, despite rotational forces causing greater damage to the brain, and are not intended or expected to protect against any form of concussion, sub-concussions or skull fractures. Yet most players (82%), coaches (66%) and referees (64%) incorrectly believe protective equipment prevents concussion in rugby [1].

A headguard (scrum cap) design increases the risk of rotational forces to the brain given the padding-shaped design, with the gaps between the foam shapes allowing for increased “catch points” that increase rotational forces to the brain. Understanding the mechanics of brain injury from rotational forces and the physicality of the brain to sub-concussions means that Rezon would never permit Rotection technology to be used in a headguard (scrum cap) design.

Rethought design

Rezon has incorporated Rotection® technology into a soft-form, protective sports headband, Halos®. With Halos®, every design principle and every decision is intentional to create the world’s most advanced and technically superior solution to reducing brain injury.

Ergonomic shaping:

Halos® covers those areas of the head with the highest probability of incurring head injuries in sport – importantly where 80% of all impacts occur. Halos® provides 53% head coverage across the occipital, temporal, frontal, and sphenoid regions of the skull.

The shape of the Halos® is deliberately engineered to avoid generating false confidence in the wearer (known as the risk compensation theory), and to minimise any negative impact on the performance and playing technique of the wearer, including the power and direction of heading a football.

Game comfort:

Halos® outer layer is a smooth, sleek, high-grade performance fabric in that is water repellent, tear-resistant and repels UV rays. The smooth, skin-like exterior is a deliberate design feature to avoid any creation of rotational force “catch points”.

Next to the head, an anti-odour, anti-microbial and hypoallergenic lining provides comfort. In addition, a textured silicone grip layer keeps Halos® securely in place during play, including the heading of a football, or in the scrum and ruck in rugby. The silicone grips also create air channels that facilitate skin cooling, breathability and sweat-wicking.

How do we compare?

Halos® is in a league of its own for brain protection, design and legality.

Product (Technology)Brain ProtectionSpecific Rotational Force ReductionPPE CE*Sport(s)Product WeightProduct Thickness
Rezon Halos® (Rotection)YesYes: Allows 30mm slippage & 61% rotational force reductionYesSport Agnostic70 grams9.5mm
N-Pro Scrum Cap (Defentex)
NoNoNoRugby190 grams13mm
Unequel Halo 1 & 2 (Acceleron)NoNoNoFootball178 grams10mm
HeadStrong Headguard (IMPALT silicone gel)NoNoNoFootball190 grams8-17-26mm
Storelli Exoshield (Zorbium)NoNoNoFootball116 grams12mm
Gamebreaker Aura (D30)NoNoNoSport Agnostic86 grams10mm
Mips (world-leading ingredient technology)YesYes: Allows 15mm slippageNoHelmeted SportsA liner material – Allows 15mm slippageA liner material – Allows 15mm slippage

* Head protection falls into either Category II or Category III Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) certification. It is illegal to place any protective headwear on the UK and European product market for sale without PPE certification. Any person or organisation that claims that protective headwear is Category I PPE or a medical device is incorrect.

Halos® is compared against leading competitor products (as described on their website/product information):

N-Pro, a rugby scrum cap/headguard designed to reduce the linear/ g-force energy transferred to a player’s head during impact. World Rugby have devised a new five-year Global Law Trial for headgear designed to help reduce head injury risk, but this only requires linear acceleration testing to be carried out. N-Pro is the only headguard to be approved for this trial. Irish product.

Unequal Halo 1 and 2, a football (soccer) headband that absorbs and disperses impact shock and reduces acceleration. No detail given on rotational force reduction, with greater focus and explanation on linear force reduction. US product.

Headstrong, a headguard focused on being able to head the ball in football given current calls to reduce and ban heading. The band has no protection on the forehead, and has a liquid gel core at back and sides to better absorb and divert the energy of impact to the head. No detail given on rotational force reduction, with greater focus and explanation on linear force reduction. Danish product.

Storelli, a football (soccer) headguard made from foam that is engineered specially for soccer to reduce g-forces to the head by up to 50%. No detail given on rotational force reduction, with greater focus and explanation on linear force reduction. US product.

Gamebreaker, a football (soccer) headband that can also be used in other sports. No detail given on rotational force reduction, with greater focus and explanation on linear force reduction through D3O® impact protection material. US product.

Mips, a liner material used in 120+ helmet brands that allows a multi-directional movement of 10-15mm on certain angled head impacts to help reduce rotational forces. Swedish product.

Smart as it is simple

At 9.5mm thickness and 70 grams, Halos® is the world’s lightest and thinnest Virginia Tech 5-star rated protective sports headband. Virginia Tech provides ratings that allow consumers to make informed decisions when purchasing helmets and protective headgear on products that lower head acceleration and reduce concussion risk. The ratings and test results are based on more than ten years of research on head impacts in sports and are independent of any influence from manufacturers.

Rezon Halos band