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Brain-Pad, Inc.
322 Fayette St., Conshohocken, PA  19428
Phone- 610-397-0893 - Fax- 610-397-1897 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 14, 2012. Contact Joe Manzo for details or further information  -  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

History & State of the Art Report About

Protection of the TMJ, Base of Skull

By Reduction of Velocity Forces to the Jaw & TMJ

BPI joins other organizations, in being part of the solution to protect and reduce injury causing jaw-joint and base of skull impact for athletes.

In nearly two decades and three independent biomechanical studies sponsored by NFL Charities and NOCSAE in 1993(1), performed by Wayne State in 2005(2), and a study fully funded by the NFL with Biokinetics in 2011(3), the relative effectiveness of the dual arch mouth guard (more properly identified as a “jaw-joint protector” as opposed to a “mouth guard” for protecting teeth) was well established.  The latest tests in 2011, using two different head forms with articulated jaws with instrumentation above the condyle and into the TMJ (i.e. Temporal Mandibular Joint) measuring linear force, validated using an impact force standard for all head-contact sports, including football helmets.

BPI’s line of proprietary jaw joint protection devices (i.e. Brain-Pad Jaw-Joint Protector™) was first designed for a professional boxer, Jesse Ferguson, in the late 1980’s who was having symptoms of a lack of balance and nausea every time an impact was delivered to the left side of his jaw. When this intra-oral appliance (i.e. the precursor product to the Brain-Pad Jaw-Joint Protector™) was introduced to him and stabilized his lower jaw by positioning it slightly down and forward, his symptoms did not continue and he continued his career as a professional boxer for eight more years.

To reiterate: the Brain-Pad Jaw-Joint Protector™ is a dual arch mandibular orthotic that positions the jaw in a slightly down and forward position and achieves stabilization through its design, reducing and redirecting force from the impact to the jaw away from the TMJ, base of skull. The Brain-Pad appliance and the molars, which are the strongest bones in the skull, primarily absorb the impact forces.

As a result of the early work done by BPI, Dr. Voight Hodgson, the technical director of NOCSAE (National Operating Committee for Standards in Athletic Equipment) and a professor at Wayne State University, became very interested in jaw interaction and the implication of impact to this region of the head looking at the mandible impacting the fossa and the transfer of force and impact to the basal skull and other vital regions. Another major concern by Dr. Hodgson was chinstrap loading and the detrimental forces affecting a number of cranial nerves that control sensory and motor functions. Brain Pad believes that its Brain-Pad Jaw Joint Protector™ addresses both of these issues.

In 2003(4) a benchmark was established by a study conducted by Biokinetics of Canada, authored by Dr Elliot Pellman that established 9.3 ± 1.9 m/sec of velocity impact as creating significant force. In 2005, at Wayne State University, using the head form with an articulated jaw, BPI revisited this and found similar results as in 1993 study, with impact forces being delivered directly to the facemask and also direct to the chin.  Both studies found that the Brain-Pad Jaw Joint Protector™ reduced jaw-transmitted forces more than any other mouth guard or any other oral protection device.  

In 2010 the Oklahoma Athletic Associations hosted the first symposium(5) on jaw-joint related Energy Transmittion with leading experts in the subject matter and began to focus scientific attention on this long-neglected and vital joint (i.e. the TMJ).  

Then in 2011, in a fully funded by the NFL study using a new head form with a articulated jaw at Biokinetics in Canada, it was shown that the Brain-Pad Jaw-Joint Protector was measurably superior at withstanding/reducing a 9.5 m/sec of velocity impact than other leading retail mouth guards. In fact, the study showed, when compared to wearing no mouth guard at all, those other mouth guards actually increased velocity impact forces rather than decreased velocity impact forces. BPI realizes that no one product is capable of preventing all skull based injury but any product, such as the Brain-Pad Jaw-Joint Protector™, that substantially reduces impact forces to the thin base of the skull can only be a benefit to the athlete.  

With injuries, especially TMJ trauma, on the minds of all parents, the only acceptable result that protective sports equipment can be allowed to do is to bring about a reduction of velocity impact forces.  

We have, in our scientific community, a great understanding of linear impact forces, which were greatly aided by the auto industry’s crash test programs. However, lateral, angular, and rotational forces are not understood as well. Current helmet testing protocols and equipment date from the late 1960’s and should be updated to observe more than just skull fractures.  

Brain Pad has always been the leader in advancing the science of velocity impact reduction, and as a result of that commitment, Brain Pad contacted Applied Research (“ARA”) to develop a full computational model that will be both analytical and predictive to finally understand individual tissue strain, lateral force, angular force, and rotational force.

ARA and BPI briefed the Military, NFLPA, and Congress about the potential benefit available to the US Government in both military and commercial (i.e. sports) applications. Although the briefing was well received, available funding could not be found. This study would have been the most advanced study ever done, taking advantage of the billions of dollars that have been spent trying to understand Jaw-joint mechanics to build a true digital model which could reflect, track, project, and describe potential trauma-producing forces.  This research effort could lead to the establishment of realistic and effective standards for protective military and sports equipment design.

It is time for everyone (i.e. athletes, coaches, trainers, sports medicine doctors, sports equipment manufacturers, regulating agencies, and state and federal governments) to work together to understand the potential causes and detrimental effects of injury and to establish realistic standards of design to reduce, as much as possible, the incidence of potential jaw-impact injuries.   

As an example of effective regulation, most of the international combat arts associations (i.e. International Kickboxing Federation, International Sport Combat Association, International Sport Karate and Kickboxing Association, and Kick International) take the Brain-Pad Jaw-Joint Protector’s role in reducing jaw forces to the body very seriously with mandated use during competitions and unpaid endorsements from participants. It is time that amateur and professional helmeted sports leagues and associations do likewise.

It is our responsibility(athletes, coaches, trainers, sports medicine doctors, sports equipment manufacturers, regulating agencies, and state and federal governments) to preserve the athlete’s quality of life long after the games are over.


Experts relied upon are by Brain-Pad in supervising, performing, and evaluating the studies and tests discussed are as follows: 

a. Joseph Manzo, President, Brain-Pad, Inc. (responsible for  developing or approving marketing and advertising claims, supervision of sales efforts, and evaluation of supporting tests, data, and representations).

b. Dr. Albert Gusenbauer, Shareholder (influential maxillofacial surgeon in Canada long-involved in athlete and military safety, especially relating to jaw delivered injuries), Injury Prevention in Sports – Hamilton Academy of Dentistry, January 2001,  Injury in Sports Related to Trauma to the Lower Jaw- Dentistry Today 2003.  Contact information: 905-928-1370; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

c. Dr. Robert Mongrain, R&D Joint Venture Partner (responsible for developing a customer-made version of the Brain-Pad® jaw-joint protector that can be fitted and provided by sports dentists). Contact information: 918-760-3500; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .

d. Timothy Walilko, Ph.D., Sr. Research Engineer, Applied Research Associates, Inc, (Biomechanical engineer long-associated with head-drop studies, helmet chin strap loading and basal skull impact injuries in sports and military). Contact information: 210-344-7644; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .

e. Cory Schafer, League Commissioner, International Sport Kickboxing Association (became first sports league to mandate use of dual-arch mouth guards after 10 years of use, specifically the Brain-Pad® jaw-joint protector). Contact information: 352-331-0260; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .

f. Steve Fossum, President, International Fight Sports Association (has strongly recommended and mandated use of the Brain-Pad® jaw-joint protector after 10 years of use in all competitions involving contact). Contact information: 916-663-2467; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .

g. Dr. Edward Williams, Retired Founder of WIPSS, Inc. and inventor of the WIPSS™ jaw-joint protector re-branded as the Brain-Pad® jaw-joint protector. Contact information: 215-242-3141

h. Dr. Kem Moser, influential local maxillofacial surgeon who has been active in Prevention, Nutrition, and Oral Health for the past 30 years of his clinical practice in Kennett Square, Pa. A past president of the Penna. Craniomandibular Society, he is a Diplomat of the American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine. Dr. Moser has lectured on myofunctional therapy, sleep disorders, and dietary influences related to ideal growth and orthopedic development. He is President of the Penna. Craniomandibular Society). Contact information: 610-444-6300; 484-883-0848, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

i. Dr. Steve Smith developed and tested jaw-joint protector devices on the Philadelphia Eagles in the 1979-1980 season as Director, Temporomandibular Center, and Osteopathic Medical Center of Philadelphia. Founded TMJ Clinic, 1977. Also has: Smith, S.D.: "Mouth guards in Contact Sports; Case Study/ Documentary on a TMJ Prone Patient". Essay presented May 7, 1981, Virginia Osteopathic Medical Association 75th Annual Convention, Williamsburg, VA. in Atlas of Temporomandibular Orthopedics Monograph: Dentistry in Sports Medicine, pages 77 - 100. Contact information: 610-647-2755;
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

The following list of references is provided to facilitate any further inquiry that the reader may desire to pursue.  Refer to the BPI web site ( to stay informed about this vital subject.

1903 The Jaw Blow James Gray Duncanson The British Medical Journal 

1979 Sports Dentistry:Protection and Performance from Mouth Guards and Bite Splints Stephen D. Smith DMD

1993 Head and Neck reduction NOCSAE Voigt R. Hodgson Ph.D

1994 Jaw Joint Disorders in contact sports Athletes Diagnosis and Prevention Edward D. Williams DMD

1995 A preventable Mechanism of Injury Edward D. Williams DMD

1997 ASTM Designation: F1 Standard Test Method and Performance specification for Jaw-Joint Protectors 

2003 Sports related Trauma to the lower jaw Dr. Albert Gusenbauer DDS Dentistry Today 

2003 Professional Football: Reconstruction of Game Impacts and Injuries Elliot Pellman M.D

2005 Biomechanical Evaluation of Various Mouth Guards used in Contact Sports Cynthia Bir Ph.D Wayne State University 

2007 Biomechanics response of the human mandible to impacts of the chin Crag, Bir, Viano and Tashman Journal of Biomechanics

2010 Jaw Joint Injury and the Preventive role of dual arch technology Tim Walilko Ph.d Oklahoma Athletic trainers  State convention 

2011 Effects of Mouth Guards on Head Responses and Mandible Forces in Football Pro Biomechanics LLC and Biokinetics Annuals of Biomedical Engineering 

2012 Overview of jaw joint research to be published  by Tim Walilko Ph.d Applied Research 

Mandates from International Kick Boxing, International Sports Karate, 
Kick International, International Martial Arts Union Middle East.


1 Head-Neck Research NOCSAE January 26. 1993
2 Biomechanical Evaluation of Mouth Guards used in contact sports Wayne State 2005 
3 Effects of Mouth Guards on Head Response and Mandible Forces on Football Helmet Impacts Biokinetics 2011
4 Professional football: reconstruction of Game Impacts and Injuries. EJ Pellman Neurosurgery
5 Oklahoma Athletic Trainers Association State Convention 2010

" The first Brain-Pad "

Jesse Ferguson was a professional boxer that developed significant Temporomandibular
disorder causing crippling nausea, balance problems and headaches - threatening to prematurely
end his career. After searching for a solution a local physician created a new technology.
And, Jesse Ferguson’s career was saved.


A single protector was uniquely developed to keep his jaw secure when struck, and to keep the jaw
positioned slightly down and forward, which keeps the condyles( the back spurs of the jaw bone )
from being driven into his unprotected tmj sockets. The first time Jesse wore this new device, he could
not believe this unique mouth guard could protect his tmj so well. His glass jaw syndrome
dissapeared. Jesse fought for years after this experiencing no problems. . . He could
continue his career knowing his TMJ Sockets were being better protected by a Pad he wore in his mouth.

And thus, the first Brain-Pad® was born.

To date, the original design has been refined a number of times, but the technology remains soundly in
place, protected by over 20 patents in the United States and abroad. Over the past 15 years, Brain-Pad,
Inc. has protected over 3 million adult & junior athletes, and competitors across the contact sport worlds.

The Brain-Pad continues to be the only guard biomechanically Tested & Proven to reduce impact energy
at the base of the skull.

Brain-Pad is dedicated to providing this superior technology as the only preventative messure that can be implimented BEFORE the impact happens.

Just ask Jesse's Ferguson, Cung Le, Jerome LeBanner, Michael Grant or the 1.5 million users that have
benefited from Brain-Pad's protective, performance enhancing mouth guards.



External Head & Wrist Protection

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International Technology Mandate: IKF & ISCF