IP: Yeah, you can, but it's complicated.
First of all, the athletes don't want them. Pro bike and hockey helmets are built down to the weight & offer just the required amount of protection (yes, there are standards). Any more weight is competitive disadvantage. Just like steroids, it might be harmful to your body, but at this level, winning is everything.
Second, there are standards. It's great to ensure a minimum of protection for any of the products you find on a shelf in a store (with proper label of course). However, it makes people feel they are safe enough. I know in football, we really need the NFL and NCAA to just require better protection (in fact, NFL now requires hip pads, previously optional). Unfortunately, they are snail-like slow.
Third, better protection can lead to more damage. It was the better football helmets of the 1970's that lead to running backs leading with their head. No one in a leather helmet would dare try that.
I think the "wuss" factor may be the smallest difficulty of them all. However, it does show how great concepts need great design. Show a pro athlete something that was jury-rigged in a garage and he will laugh you off and tell all his friends what a dork you are. Show him a hot design and explain how he will be able to have a normal conversation with his kids when he is 50 and you have a shot.
"The key to success in this business is to find a boss who doesn't care." - Mike Rowe