In this work, we discuss the limitations of the existing collocation-based coefficient of restitution method for simulating impacts in continuous systems. We propose a new method for modeling the impact dynamics of continuous systems based on the unit impulse response. The developed method allows one to relate modal velocity initial conditions before and after impact without requiring the integration of the system equations of motion during impact. The proposed method has been used to model the impact of a pinned-pinned beam with a rigid obstacle. Numerical simulations are presented to illustrate the inability of the collocation-based coefficient of restitution method to predict an accurate and energy-consistent response. We also compare the results obtained by unit impulse-based coefficient of restitution method with a penalty approach.