P18072: Rugby Scrum Cap to Reduce Concussion


Project Summary Project Information

For an updated project description, click on the following link for the Project Readiness Package.

Concussions make up a major portion of injuries in rugby, and can keep players out of games for weeks. Our team intends to reduce the amount of concussions by redesigning a scrum cap (one of the few types of gear allowed during rugby besides a mouthguard), so that any hits to a player’s head in practice or in a game are reduced. A scrum cap is a piece of equipment that a player may wear on their head to protect their head and ears from soft tissue injury. It is currently not designed to protect the player from any concussions, which is what many people believe it should do. We intend to add this feature to enhance current designs.

“About 1,200 people suffer head injuries while playing rugby each year. About two-thirds of these injuries are either concussion or brain injuries.” - CONCUSSION STATISTICS

“Padded headgear does not reduce the rate of head injury or concussion. The low compliance rates are a limitation. Although individuals may choose to wear padded headgear, the routine or mandatory use of protective headgear cannot be recommended.” - LACK OF PREVENTION

Our motivation for solving this problem is that half of us are members of the RIT Women’s Football Rugby team, and we have seen many of our teammates affected by concussions, ranging from minor ones that last a few weeks, to major ones that have ceased play for some of our friends permanently. Our goal is to build a scrum cap that players can wear that will reduce the risk of concussion while remaining within the strict dimensional and material standards that USA rugby requires gear to adhere to (see below).

A product similar to our goal (known as the N-Pro) was developed and released in late 2016. This scrum cap is claimed to prevent concussion, but World Rugby has stated that it does not currently comply with World Rugby Regulation 12 or Law 4. Our design and idea is different from their design, and we also plan to design and work with the world rugby regulations, as that is our main concern.

We also may investigate a change to the style of the scrum cap, which is has a reputation for making a player look “daft”, which is quite a reason why many players choose not to wear one. If we can fix this too, then the device is more likely to be used by those who need it.

Project Name
A Concussion Preventative Scrum Cap for Rugby
Project Number
Project Family
Start Term
End Term
Faculty Guide
Ehsan Rashedi, exreie@rit.edu
Primary Customer
Clare Canavan, canavan.cc@gmail.com
Sponsor (financial support)
MSD Senior Design

Team Members

MSD Team Photo Week 1 Andrew Draveck, Akane Fujimoto, Caroline Kruse, Rachel Baumgarten, Jamie Lucarelli & Eric Iverson

MSD Team Photo Week 1 Andrew Draveck, Akane Fujimoto, Caroline Kruse, Rachel Baumgarten, Jamie Lucarelli & Eric Iverson

Member Role Contact
Caroline Kruse Lead Engineer: Materials cek9930@rit.edu
Jamie Lucarelli Finance and Operations Manager jal5048@rit.edu
Rachel Baumgarten Quality Engineer and Communications rnb7880@rit.edu
Akane Fujimoto Project Manager axf1039@rit.edu
Eric Iverson Lead Engineer: Human Experience exi1329@rit.edu
Andrew Draveck Design Engineer dad2437@rit.edu

Work Breakdown: By Phase


Planning & Execution

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Problem Definition

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Preliminary Detailed Design

Detailed Design

Build & Test Prep

Subsystem Build & Test

Integrated System Build & Test

Customer Handoff & Final Project Documentation (Verification & Validation)

Work Breakdown: By Topic

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Functional Decomposition

Morphological Chart

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