HeadCheck, Trek Factory Racing partner to improve concussion care for riders

The Waterloo-based Trek Factory Racing off-road program has announced a partnership with HeadCheck Health, a provider of concussion management software and services.

The TFR cross country, enduro, and downhill teams will all use HeadCheck to improve the identification, documentation, assessment, and management of concussions.

“Head injuries are common, but the correct knowledge on how to manage them is not so widespread.”

“This is about taking care of our athletes, pure and simple,” said Trek Sports marketing director, Tim Vanderjeugd. “Anytime we can give our programs the tools to help better identify and manage concussion in support of the long-term health of our riders, we are all in.”

HeadCheck is bringing its technology, backed by evidence-based science, to help TFR programs better manage concussion policy. The app collects baseline data about individuals to be able to later compare those results if that person experiences a traumatic head injury.

HeadCheck’s mobile and web-based software can be adapted to an organization’s policy, personnel, and resources. It is currently deployed by professional and amateur teams in more than 15 sports such as football, rugby, hockey, and soccer.

The company was founded by University of British Columbia students, Kerry Costello and Harrison Brown, in 2015. It was previously selected to take part in the HyperGrowth: Life accelerator program cohort.

“We are excited to be working with a forward-thinking organization such as TFR,” said Brown. “We know they take health and safety very seriously and explore all avenues to take care of their riders.”

TFR programs compete at the highest level of mountain biking and experience some of the most challenging circumstances in sport. The team wants to have the maximum number of precautions in place to protect the health of its athletes, should an accident occur.

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“Mountain biking and racing in particular can be a dangerous sport,” said TFR rider, Anton Cooper. “Head injuries are common, but the correct knowledge on how to manage them is not so widespread. I’ve been fortunate enough myself to have never had any issues with concussion, but it was great to get some baseline data in case I ever do sustain a head knock. I now have some clear baseline data I can refer back to test and monitor my symptoms, progression, and recovery if that situation ever occurs.”

TFR’s on-site team staff for all three off-road programs will be operating HeadCheck at competitions. Per team policy, all riders underwent a baseline concussion assessment in February, which can be used as a comparison for post-injury assessments.

Documentation of tests will be available to medical professionals to assist in their clinical judgment of whether to remove riders from competition, and to help ensure their safe return upon recovery. In addition, riders will be able to track and self-report any symptoms from their mobile devices to help complete the circle of care.

Caitlin Hotchkiss

Caitlin Hotchkiss

Content coordinator, social media smartypants, wordsmith, Human Workflow™. Exists primarily on coffee, cat pictures, German dance metal, and pro wrestling. I will fight for your right to the Oxford comma.