It was back in 2011, when a young Rugby player named Anthony was involved in a multiplayer collision that left him unable to recall where he was or what position he had been playing thusfar. Undeterred by the collision, Anthony attempted to resume play just minutes later. Thankfully, a teammate, who was a trained EMT and pre-med student, recognized the signs that Anthony may have suffered a concussion. His teammate recommended that he remain out of the game until further examination. Had this observation and recommendation been overlooked, Anthony could have continued playing, leaving him vulnerable to long-term brain injury.
The inception of Force Impact Technologies Inc., in 2013 was aimed at addressing this problem, which could very possibly become life threatening. The company integrates technology into sporting equipment to increase detection of potential injuries. The FIT Risk Mitigation Platform, helps promote concussion awareness to youth athletes around the world. The organization focuses on amateur athletes between the age group of 12-25, who might potentially risk a head injury.
Monitoring Severe Impacts is Easier than Ever
FITGuard is a mouthguard with sensors that detects the force athletes’ encounter upon being hit, allowing it to monitor severe impacts that may cause brain injury. Additionally, long-term monitoring is conducted to understand the effect of cumulative impacts over time and for detecting symptoms of concussions using the innovative app-based platform.
The FIT platform contains three core features. The FITGuard mouthguard which measures linear and rotational acceleration. Combined with a mobile app that prompts the user with questions and allows for remote long-term monitoring of potential symptoms of concussions, through cognitive performance exam. Lastly, this system is reconciled on an FDA and HiPPA compliment backend, cloud-based Quality Management System (QMS), for ease of access and aggregation of data.
FITGuard is the most advanced and accurate device for measuring forces athletes encounter and in combination with the innovative app, it provides the highest chance of helping detect and potentially avoid life altering downstream effects of playing the sport they enjoy.
The Start-Up Veteran
Anthony Gonzales is the CEO of FIT. He is also a veteran in the start-up community. Anthony’s unique skill set has been battle hardened through the trenches of entrepreneurship. He holds a Bachelor Science in Management Entrepreneurship from Arizona State University. Additionally, he obtained his M.B.A in Supply Chain and logistics from ASU as well. Currently, he is enrolled at John Hopkins University as he looks set to obtain a Master of Science in Biotechnology. Previously, Anthony founded a 501(c) 3, was a collegiate rugby participant, completed an internship with Morgan Stanley, coached High School Wrestling, and even has traveled throughout eighteen countries worldwide.
When Technology Helps to Minimize Injury
The idea behind the FIT Platform is to monitor athletes on and off the field in order to maximize the possibility of detecting traumatic brain injury and its impacts. FITGuard captures all instances where an athlete has been hit and alerts the user and others that the hit was hard enough to potentially cause a concussion. Additionally, the FIT Platform allows for long term monitoring of these impacts and cumulative hits via the innovative app and tracks the effect of these impacts on brain. This is a vital research tool that will begin to help answer few of the fundamental questions related to traumatic brain injury research but can also be used now to protect athletes of all ages, and monitor the health of their brain as they continue to play the sports they enjoy.
The leaders of the organization expect FIT Platform to soon be the gold-standard system used to collect cranial acceleration data for research and validation. Technology is vital in minimizing harm while maximizing the enjoyment of sports at all levels. The FIT Platform is a fusion of old and new technologies both designed to increase athlete safety and is a natural fit with the integration of technology in sports.
Standing Out in the Crowded Space and Future Roadmap
Unlike its competitors, FITGuard is designed to ensure maximum accuracy based on fundamental principles of anatomy and physics, (unlike its competitors including sticker-based motion detection and other mouth guard/sensor combinations). The company has gone through the most development cycles ensuring a high-end product, has an innovative app to increase chances of detecting signs/symptoms of traumatic brain injury and has generated interest around the world from athletes in a variety of contact sports including football, rugby and judo among others.
As a company created for athletes, by athletes, FITGuard is the expert at overcoming struggle and challenges. When it started, there were many technical risks, however, the organization has found the optimal way to safely design, develop, and manufacture its device. Through rigorous protocol and years in the laboratory, FITGuard is now confident enough that the solution provided by the organization is the most cutting-edge innovation on the market.
A variety of clinical studies to answer fundamental questions in traumatic brain injury research, which will include a demonstration of the accuracy of the FIT Platform, followed by eventual FDA approval and widespread adoption of the FIT Platform.