HONOLULU (KHON2) — Tackling concussion diagnosis and education. That’s the goal of an ongoing study from the University of Hawaii College of Education and others. Certain schools are participating by playing with sensors inside their helmets.

It’s called the Hawaii Concussion Awareness Management Program, which has received millions of dollars from the Gary O. Galiher Foundation and is aimed at reducing concussions.

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Among those participating are Saint Louis, Kalani, and President Theodore Roosevelt high school football teams. Part of the program involves monitoring live hits to the head during practices and games using a sensor system placed inside Riddell helmets purchased for the teams.

“High magnitude head impact over 99th percentile I get an alert, and I ask the kid or tell the athletic trainers and we ask if they have symptoms, it’s not because they have an alert they have a concussion, but it’s a way for us to know who we have to pay attention to,” University of Hawaii graduate assistant Ivet Lloansi said.

HCAMP hopes the HuTT®808 intervention helmetless tackling technique will slow the need for sensors, with fewer hard hits to the head.

“The players take off their helmets and shoulder pads and do a tackling curriculum where they take the whole purpose of it is to take their head out of the hit,” HCAMP project manager Troy Furutani said.

The tackling techniques are a work in progress according to Lloansi, but one of Roosevelt’s best players, University of Arizona bound Kamuela Kaaihue, said the tackling style works better.

“Throughout the week we’ll do tackling drills and I think it helps us a lot because everybody on the team gets to learn proper form,” said Kaaihue.

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The study was planned for three years beginning in 2019, but the pandemic forced the 2020 season to be canceled and extended the duration of the study. HCAMP is hoping to complete the study at the end of the year.