Background: The Spine Buddy® jockey vest support pad was developed to be added underneath an existing jockey vest, against the spine, to protect the torso of jockeys from being trampled by horses.
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine the force absorptive properties of the additional pad added to a jockey vest through two experiments: a simulated model and a human model.
Methods: The simulated model experiment involved dropping a 90-pound horse hoof simulator onto a force plate from a height of 12 inches under three different conditions at 10 repetitions per condition: 1) bare force plate, 2) anterior aspect of a standard jockey vest, and 3) posterior aspect of a jockey vest with the addition of the Spine Buddy® support pad. The human experiment involved dropping a significantly lighter and safer load, a 1.5-pound weight, onto the sternum of 14 male study participants laying supine on a force plate from a height of 24 inches. This occurred under the following conditions: 1) jockey vest with Spine Buddy® support pad, 2) jockey vest alone, and 3) no jockey vest. Outcome measures during all six conditions were peak force.
Results: For the simulated experiment the additional support pad reduced peak force 28.1% more than with the jockey vest alone (p=0.010). In the human experiment the additional support pad reduced peak force 6.4% more than the jockey vest alone (p=0.380).
Conclusion: Preliminarily, the results of this study demonstrate that the addition of an extra cushioned support pad to a jockey vest can add to the protective capabilities of the vest in an anterior-to-posterior direction.
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