VICIS ZERO1 YOUTH Tops Virginia Tech’s Inaugural Youth Football Helmet Ratings

Mar. 20, 2019 ⋅ Categories: Insider

VICIS ZERO1 YOUTH outperformed all youth helmets in VT Ratings and received the best score for any football helmet ever tested by Virginia Tech.

The Virginia Tech University Helmet Lab today released its inaugural VIRGINIA TECH® HELMET RATINGSTM for youth helmets, awarding VICIS’ ZERO1 YOUTH the highest available 5 STAR rating. Virginia Tech’s youth football helmet STAR methodology rates helmets based on the impact frequency and severity specifically observed in youth play. The VICIS ZERO1 YOUTH was the best performing youth helmet by a wide margin, receiving the best score ever achieved for a football helmet in Virginia Tech testing.

ZERO1 YOUTH is the first football helmet engineered specifically for young players and the impacts they encounter on the field. Like its varsity counterpart, which has been adopted by over 125 professional and college teams, the ZERO1 YOUTH features a deformable outer shell and unique columnar layer designed to slow impact forces like a car bumper. The helmet’s lightweight, compact design is tailored to youth anatomies and offers the industry’s widest field of view, allowing young players to see more of the field and react more quickly to potential impacts.

“The ZERO1 YOUTH was born from our relentless effort to protect young athletes. We applaud Virginia Tech for helping parents and coaches make well informed decisions, and are proud our helmet performed so well.”

Dave Marver, VICIS CEO and co-founder. 

Since 2011, Virginia Tech researchers have been providing unbiased helmet ratings that allow consumers to make informed decisions when purchasing helmets. The helmet ratings are the culmination of more than 10 years of peer-reviewed research on head impacts in sports and, according to Virginia Tech, identify which helmets best reduce risks of head injuries. The impact conditions and weightings are football-specific, and inclusive of the broad range of head impacts athletes are likely to experience in youth football. Sensors embedded in a test dummy head record the linear and rotational acceleration from the impacts, and those numbers are used to calculate a STAR value that measures how much each helmet reduces the head’s acceleration – which translates to a lower risk of head injury for players. According to Virginia Tech, the more stars a helmet earns in the ratings, the better it is at reducing these risks.

“The traditional ‘shrink it’ approach to youth helmet design is not sufficient to protect young athletes,” said Dr. Sam Browd, VICIS’ Chief Medical Officer. “At VICIS, it is our mission to help kids. This top rating reinforces our commitment to harvest the latest insights from medical research and technology to give players, parents, and coaches the best protection possible.”

Developed with the same methodical rigor and creativity as the flagship ZERO1 varsity football helmet, which ranked first in both 2017 and 2018’s NFL/NFLPA Helmet Laboratory Performance Testing, the ZERO1 YOUTH is available now for team and individual orders. For individual and team pricing information, contact us at


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