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Football Safety Gear
The Need for Safety Gear
Football is a very physically intensive sport. Football players have to be ready to bash into another player mercilessly, and lunge forward quickly while striving for that extra foot.
With the amount of physical hits a football player has to sustain, it is necessary that he is wearing the appropriate padded gear that is specifically made for a football game. Even with the necessary gear football players wear, the danger for a physical injury is still present.
Protection For The Head
Head protection is essential because if one's head is damaged bad enough, it can cause permanent brain damage effecting the person's personality, memory, and capabilities.
The gear below are the items which protect the head from severe injury.
Helmet: The most important part of head protection. The helmet protects the cranium from impact, and brain damage. It is made out of non-breakable plastic, lined in the inside with foam, and in the front there is a face guard.
Mouthpiece: The mouth piece is sometimes connected with the face mask. This piece form fits into the mouth when the player bites into it. The mouth piece protects the players mouth and teeth from the crushing blows a player can sustain.
Jaw Pads: Jaw pads are placed in the jaw lining of the helmet. It protects the head from sharp hits to the jaw which could lead to dislocation.
Chin Strip: Chin Strips fasten the helmet on firmly so it doesn't fly off during a tackle. It is fastened on the side of the helmet and loops under the chin to attach to the other side.
Protection for the Body
Concerns that physical contact can cause for the body are breaking the ribs, scapula, and intestinal damage.
These are the essential gear needed for proper protection on the body.
Neck Roll: With violent tackles, the possibility of whiplash is high. The neck roll is a padded circle that fastens around the players neck, reducing the chance for whiplash.
Shoulder Pads: Shoulder pads are bulky and provide the football player protection on his scapula, ribs, and chest. Usually the neck roll, and rib pads are built into the shoulder pads.
Shock Pads: Shock pads go under the shoulder pads. These provide extra cushioning and comfortability for the player.
Rib Pads: Rib pads are designed to specifically protect the ribs. Also, there are some that are made to protect the lower back. They are worn under the shoulder pads.
Protection for the Legs
Due to the need for utmost maneuverability, the protection for the legs is sparse.
There are three important pieces of equipment that are basic leg gear.
Hip Pads: Hip pads protect the hip and tailbone by lightweight foam. A girdle is used to fasten them onto the body so that they won't move.
Knee Pads: Knee pads protect the knees during fumbles, and tackles. Not only are the knees protected, the quadricep muscles are also protected. The reason football players pants are so tight is to fasten knee pads in place. Tight pants also keep the girdle in place.
Football Cleats: Football cleats help in maneuvers for a football player. The screw tips dig into the ground, and allow for quick changes, especially when the grass is wet. There are others with non screw tips meant for fake grass (turf).