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Guardian Cap wins first NFL challenge
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Guardian Innovations is pleased to announce it has won the initial NFL HeadHealthTECH Challenge for its Guardian Caps. 
As part of its “Play Smart, Play Safe” initiative, the NFL is awarding funds to companies who have a dedicated plan to, “develop new and improved helmets and protective equipment over the next three to five years.”
The Atlanta-based company manufactures a padded helmet cover that can be snapped around the face mask of any existing helmet and can absorb up to 33 percent of the impact. Guardian Caps have been on the field since 2012 and are worn by more than 60,000 athletes in practices from youth football to over 50 college programs including the national champion Clemson Tigers, who are in their fifth season utilizing Guardian Caps.
“We are honored that the NFL, Football Research, Inc. and Duke University have recognized Guardian Caps and honored us with the HeadHealthTECH award,” said Erin Hanson, owner and founder of Guardian Innovations. “We have committed our lives to improving equipment and this award allows us to continue to innovate and continue to ensure that athletes around the world enjoy the sports they love and remain safe while doing so.”
Per its website, The NFL’s HeadHealth Initiative has pledged $60 million through a series of challenges that are, “structured to stimulate research and innovation, as well as encourage connections with mentors and/or venture capitalists, with a goal of spurring developments in engineering, biomechanics, advanced sensors and material science.”
According to the HeadHealthTECH website, up to three challenges will be offered annually, dedicating funds to those with the most promising ideas.
Guardian Caps applied for, and won, the first of the two-year technology challenges. The program also offers a four-year research and development challenge. Challenges are renewable annually for up to the next five years.
“We have heard from parents, coaches and athletes around the world that they no longer practice without Guardian Caps,” said Hanson. “This honor from the NFL is a testament to all the hard work and dedication from our small team who has worked for years to justify the need for soft-shell technology.”