From FOX 29 Philadelphia
Chris O’ Connell – January 4, 2023
GLEN MILLS, Pa. – A Pennsylvania-based athletic protection company is out to prevent injuries like the one that caused Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin to collapse on the field.
Unequal Technologies in Glen Mills uses battlefield technology to make lightweight protective sportswear. The potentially life-saving gear aims to protect wearers from commotio cordis, which health experts say happens when someone experiences extreme trauma to the chest.
“I have been to five homes of parents who have lost teenagers to commotio cordis,” co-founder Rob Vito said. “One most recent was an 8-year-old boy playing soccer, and he got hit in the heart, and the father rushed out, and his son said “dad I can’t see” and he expired in his dad’s arms.”
Unequal Technologies has outfitted Olympic skiers, NFL quarterback, celebrities like Tom Cruise and even Pope Francis during his trip to Philadelphia in 2015.
“The Pope came to Philadelphia and the Vatican guard asked if we could build ballistic protection in case there was a bomb,” Vito said.
The companies biggest seller is ‘The HART Shirt,‘ a $99 kevlar-padded shirt specifically designed to prevent sudden death by commotio cordis. Since Hamlin’s shocking injury on Monday Night Football, Vito said orders for The Heart Shirt are up 800%
USA Lacrosse in 2021 mandated every youth player in the country to wear heart protection, and it’s expected that other sports may soon follow.