Marcus Lattimore Foundation / DREAMS Announces Concussion Awareness Program (C.A.P.S.)

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Foundation Donates Nearly 400 Brain Sentry Helmet-Mounted Sensors to Youth Football Leagues

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We want to ensure our youth, as well as parents and coaches, are educated on concussions, the associated symptoms and how to properly treat them. The sensors provide an additional safety tool for the teams.

The Marcus Lattimore Foundation / DREAMS is pleased to announce the Concussion Awareness Program (C.A.P.S), a program created through the sports research division of the foundation to promote safety and wellness in youth sports by reducing the amount of head injuries to athletes. In the first major initiative of the program, the foundation is collaborating with Brain Sentry to provide helmet-mounted impact sensors to the Spartanburg County School District Seven Viking Youth League and the Spartanburg County School District Three Youth Association. The devices alert when an athlete suffers an unusually rapid – and potentially dangerous – acceleration of the head, and also help to monitor sub-concussive hits. The two leagues are the very first in South Carolina to implement C.A.P.S and make this technology available to their football players.

The Marcus Lattimore Foundation / DREAMS is committed to sports safety, and the C.A.P.S Program is a great way for us to partner with the community and provide care for local athletes”, said Vernon Smith, President of Marcus Lattimore Foundation / DREAMS. “We want to ensure our youth, as well as parents and coaches, are educated on concussions, the associated symptoms and how to properly treat them. The sensors provide an additional safety tool for the teams.”

The C.A.P.S Program will provide 340 Brain Sentry Impact Counter™ sensors to the District Seven Viking Youth League and District Three Youth Association, and 30 Brain Sentry Impact Counter Plus™ sensors to local Spartanburg and Greenville County high schools. The sensors record the impact to a helmet over a 20g force, and when an impact surpasses the threshold of 80g, the sensors alert the coaching staff to remove the child from play and have him assessed for a possible concussion. Studies have shown that 53 percent of high school football players don't report their concussion symptoms and therefore put themselves at risk for more serious injury. Brain Sentry sensors help address this problem.

Greg Merril, co-founder and CEO of Bethesda, Maryland-based Brain Sentry, said, “In addition to monitoring impact, the sensors also assist coaches in teaching players proper techniques to help them avoid excessive head/helmet contact. Sometimes athletes hide symptoms of concussion to stay on the field, or they might not even know they have one. Knowing is critical because many catastrophic brain injuries are the result of second impacts to already concussed athletes.”

At the youth level, athletic trainers are not mandatory; therefore, the devices allow coaching staff and parents to detect head trauma during practice and games which may otherwise go unnoticed. Youth football players are 26 times more likely to suffer a concussion in a game than practice and more likely to suffer from a concussion than high-school-aged athletes. The sensor units are waterproof, have no batteries to charge and are sanctioned by the Arena Football League (AFL), as well as used by several high school and youth football teams.

C.A.P.S’ goal is to educate parents and coaches in the Upstate community about concussions, how to recognize the symptoms and teach the type of care athletes with previous concussions require. In an effort to offer the highest level of education possible about concussions, the program is assisting these youth programs in acquiring their Center for Disease Control and Prevention Heads Up Concussion Training and Certification.

"Being a parent, my first instinct is to protect. As the mother of an athlete who has endeared so much physical adversity in such a short time, my heartbreak is the motivation that drives me to promote safety in every sporting activity that our children are involved in through the education of health wellness and awareness”, said mother of Marcus Lattimore and founder of Marcus Lattimore Foundation, Yolanda Smith.

The Marcus Lattimore Foundation / DREAMS kicked off the C.A.P.S Program on Monday by making the sensor donations at the Spartanburg County School District Seven Viking Youth League’s football game. For more information about the program, please email dreams2138(AT)gmail.com. For more information about The Marcus Lattimore Foundation / DREAMS and how to make a contribution visit http://www.marcuslattimorefoundation.com.

About The Marcus Lattimore Foundation / DREAMS
The Marcus Lattimore Foundation / DREAMS (Driven Righteously to Empower Athletes’ Minds Spiritually) was launched in August of 2013 and is committed to youth development programs and initiatives which emphasize Christian values, character, life-skills development, education, recreation, health and wellness. The foundation builds community partnerships with nonprofit organizations and schools to encourage and aid our youth to become upstanding citizen role models and dynamic leaders through teaching Christian virtues of chastity, temperance, charity, diligence, patience, kindness and humility. This foundation primarily exists to help youth leagues, parents, high school and college student athletes. Additionally, DREAMS is committed to providing top-notch sports related rehabilitation assistance to high school athletes with severe sports injuries who may have inadequate health coverage. The foundation educates athletes and parents on the NCAA eligibility requirements, performing sports research in youth activities such as concussion studies and monitoring core body temperatures, and provides outreach programs to South Carolina communities.

About Brain Sentry
Brain Sentry has a simple goal: to stop lives from being devastated by sports-related brain injuries. Named a Top Startup of the Year in 2013 by The Wall Street Journal, Brain Sentry is privately held and headquartered in Bethesda, MD. The company was founded by a team of award-winning health-related product developers who have continued to win accolades; the Brain Sentry Impact Sensor was named Best Tech Product of the Year by Baltimore Innovation Week. Recently featured on The Today Show and Good Morning America, Brain Sentry is the official sensor provider for the Arena Football League. Brain Sentry’s initial focus is to provide sensors for the three most popular helmeted contact sports: football, lacrosse, and hockey. Brain Sentry is also developing sensors for biking, alpine, and other helmeted activities. Learn more at http://www.brainsentry.com.

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James A. Boyle
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Brain Sentry - Impact Sensors
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