Air Conditioned Football Helmets How They Work

By Sushan Shrestha / 6 July 2023 06:43 AM

LSU Tigers will be the first team to sport air conditioned helmet
LSU Tigers will be the first team to sport air conditioned helmet( Source : facebook )

Air Conditioned football helmets work for five hours with a Cyclone V2 installed inside them. Tigeraire produces the technology.

The tech company does not make helmets. Instead, they make the air accelerator which can be stationed inside the headgear. They have Cyclone V2 and Tornado V2.

The former is made for Varsity football teams, while the latter is for high school teams.

The cooling equipment takes in air from the helmet's air vents via the fan placed at the back. The tubes attached to it throw in cool air forward and backward, maintaining the flow and circulation of the air needed to create a positive environment.

It is designed so that the circulated air flows in every region. It does not blow directly to the eyes and won't dry the users' eyes.

The cooling equipment is only approved for use in Riddel SpeedFlex and Schutt F7.

Cost Of AC Football Helmet

Air conditioned football helmets cost $185 (£147.64) for the Tigeraire Cyclone air accelerator V2 consisting of a couple of blower units and tubes.

Football Cyclone V2 comes at $185
Football Cyclone V2 comes at $185( Source : tigeraire )

The LSU Tigers team wears Riddell SpeedFlex, priced at $499.99. Adding the cost of Cyclone V2, an air-conditioned SpeedFlex will come at $684.99.

Football Cyclone v2 fits easily inside the headgear. It has a rechargeable LiPo battery that lasts more than five hours on a single charge.

Tigeraire Tornado v2 is another powerful, light device that can operate for over 5 hours. It is priced at $95. It is also called Lil Breezy and is made for high schools.

It does not have integrated tubing and trigger buttons like Cyclone V2, making the price cheaper.

LSU New Football Helmets

LSU air conditioned football helmets will have Cyclone v2 installed inside the Riddell SpeedFlex helmets for the 2023 season, including practices.

They become the only football program to adopt the latest technology. It is their way of tackling the hot and humid climate in Louisiana.

The company behind the production of the innovative technology is Tigeraire. The company claimed to help tackle the heat and produce positive student-athlete results.

Tigeraire air conditioned football helmets are presumed to reduce the impact of dehydration, stress, fatigue, and brain fog. They are determined to facilitate players by increasing their endurance, focus, and responsiveness while maintaining comfort.

Everything started during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 when protective visors made their way during the preseason camps. The heat retention inside the headgear was a significant issue.

It led to the idea of air-conditioned helmets, which can circulate air from the tubes installed inside the headgear and maintain the forward and backward flow of the air.

After several changes, the final model won't dry up the eyes while keeping the head cool. It can provide cool air for five hours, long enough to last an entire match.

Likewise, the cooling device can last for about four years.

The Office of Innovation and Technology Commercialization at LSU has a patent for the cooling and circulation technology under the name of TigerAire.

New College Football Helmets

New college football helmets comprise the new air-conditioned helmets LSU Tigers will sport in practices and their regularly scheduled games in 2023.

UCF Knights adopted gold helmets with white logo in 2022
UCF Knights adopted gold helmets with white logo in 2022( Source : twitter )

This year, we will also see Florida State University, Miami Hurricanes, UCF Knights, Minnesota Golden Gophers, and Western Kentucky Hilltoppers in new college football uniforms.

Last year, many teams announced their new hard hats. Minnesota Golden Gophers had an 'M' mark on their white headgear.

Similarly, UCF Knights, Colorado Buffaloes, Utah Utes, and Lousiville Cardinals did some new work to their headgear.

Several NFL teams, like Los Angeles Chargers, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Indianapolis Colts, and Cleveland Browns, will be sporting new headgear for the 2023 season.

Likewise, NFL and NFLPA decided to introduce Quarterback-specific hard hats for the 2023 campaign. They aimed at reducing concussion rates for the QBs.

The new head gears are designed by VICIS and are called VICIS ZERO2 MATRIX QB. CBS Sports reported that it reduced the impact blow by 7% compared to the helmets in 2022.

New Football Helmet Technology

New football helmet technology introduces carbon-fiber football helmets with liquid shock absorbers. Standford University scientists are behind this innovation.

In their collaborative work with the Savior Brain, they found that adding liquid shock absorbers in gear brings down the impact rate by a third. An exact 21 absorbers were used for the study.

As per NFL's report the conucussion rate from 201 to 2020 saw a 25% decline
As per NFL's report the conucussion rate from 201 to 2020 saw a 25% decline( Source : nfl )

The testing procedure was performed in proper NFL simulation, and the data were compared to four existing helmets. The Head Accelerate Response Metric (HARM) score saw a 33% lower impact rate.

Due to continuous head blows, NFL athletes are prone to Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) and other brain injuries. To tackle it, NFL has been making constant investments in helmet innovation. They are determined to present a safer playing space for everyone.

Also, helmet manufacturers have been innovating and developing new methods to lower the concussion rate.

In 2022, Ridell introduced Riddel Axiom. It was developed to target a better "impact response and reduce Head Impact Exposure," per the company's official website. It became the first of its kind to have an InSite impact response system.

It generates the head impact report. Coaches can use the analytics and make decisions to take out the player for their good.

Riddell helmet reconditioning must undergo once a year at a Riddell Factory Authorize Reconditioner. The process requires 4 to 5 weeks for completion and includes sanitization, cleaning, reconditioning, and recertifying the equipment.

Virginia Tech Football Helmet Ratings

Virginia Tech football helmet ratings are 1. Vicis Zero2 Trench (score: 0.52), 2. Vicis Zero2 (score: 0.73) and 3. Schutt F7 Ltd (score: 0.75).

As you can see, the #1 placed helmet has a 0.52 score, while the #2 rated helmet has a score of 0.73. The scores are based on protection metrics; the fewer its number, the more safety is guaranteed.

Star ratings and score of Xenith Shadow XR and Vicis Zero1
Star ratings and score of Xenith Shadow XR and Vicis Zero1( Source : twitter )

The Virginia Tech 5-Star Helmet Rating System has been around since 2011 and is considered one of the most trusted research in the market.

The research facility has accumulated results from helmets over the last decade. The scoring criteria are based on the capacity of helmets to reduce concussion risk on the field after a player experiences an impact.

Steven Rowson, Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics at Virginia Tech, stated the goals behind the rating mechanism. They want to aware athletes and consumers of helmet safety issues and provide a base for manufacturers to adapt to change to produce safer designs.

After operating a series of weight-based impact tests in different playing environments, they have presented the ratings for these helmets:

  • Riddel Axiom, score: 0.85
  • Schutt F7 2.0, score: 1.35
  • Riddel Speedflex Diamond, score: 1.69
  • Xenith Shadow XR, score: 1.91
  • Vicis Zero1, score: 1.92
  • Light LS2-CV, score: 2.38
  • Schutt F7 Vtd, score: 2.54
  • Riddel Speedflex True, score: 2.60
  • Xenith Shadow, score: 3.35
  • Xenith Epic+, score: 3.79

All the head gears we discussed above have received five stars. The fewer stars mean, the more risk for concussions. So, one must consider the star ratings and score for any helmet before purchasing it.

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