Fall football season is quickly approaching, and many coaches and schools have begun the search for the latest gear. With endless options and a staggering price range, choosing the best football helmets for young players can be a challenge. Helmets can retail anywhere from $75 to upwards of $350.
Yet, as many coaches know, safety should trump price as the ultimate guide when shopping for a football helmet. Virginia Tech released its second annual star rating of current helmet models, and it turns out, price reflects little on safety. SteelLocker's own Rawlings NRG Quantum Youth helmet, offered at $169.99, received a four-star rating for 2012.
The NRG Quantum Youth helmet has three primary safety and comfort features: Active Impact Absorption™, Rawlings C3 Custom Comfort Cushion™ and Rawlings Heat Exchange™.
According to Rawlings Football, the Active Impact Absorption™ liner features durability-tested airbags, which are strategically placed and designed to maintain shape and absorb impact forces. The C3 Custom Comfort Cushion™ inflates and deflates to ensure the most secure fit possible for your athlete, and its foam construction provides additional force protection. Finally, the helmet's Heat Exchange™ technology allows for proper ventilation and air circulation inside.
The combined safety features of the NRG Quantum Youth helmet secured its four-star rating from Virginia Tech, widely regarded as a leader in impact research. The university reported that its evaluation system is the result of eight years of data collected from more than 1.8 million head impacts, and in the consequent test, each helmet is subjected to 120 impacts of varying force and location.
Of course, even the best helmet on the market can't always prevent an injury. Coaches should always consider limiting high-impact exercises in practice to minimize young athletes' risk. For more information, including further product information and pricing, check out SteelLocker's available football helmets.