Should girls lacrosse be given helmets


New protective helmets given to girl’s lacrosse ( photo courtesy of Cascade Maverik Lacrosse) New protective helmets given to girl’s lacrosse ( photo courtesy of Cascade Maverik Lacrosse)

Muna Mohamed, Staff Writer

Lacrosse is a fast paced game that involves quick breaking and skilled catching and passing as each player tries to throw the ball into their opponents goal. However, one important aspect of lacrosse differs between the girl and boy version of the game, which is the little contact in girl’s lacrosse. Unlike boy’s lacrosse where they are allowed to knock each other around, girl’s lacrosse focuses more on clean, quick contact that avoids the head and neck area, which explains their minimal amount of equipment . Recently, headgear has been introduced across the country to girl’s lacrosse teams and even required in some states, resulting in many polarizing opinions about whether or not the headgear is actually beneficial and decreases the amount of concussions the players might receive.

The idea of requiring headgear in girl’s lacrosse was first introduced in the 1980s during a court case that involved the family of a girl whose daughter had been hit with a fast paced ball in her eye, damaging it. This led to the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association, or MIAA, mandating that the girl’s lacrosse teams must wear headgear in order to avoid future accidents . At that time, headgear was not specifically designed for girl’s lacrosse, forcing them to make due with chunky youth hockey helmets that negatively impacted their gameplay.  This issue was not resolved until the 2004-2005 lacrosse season when the US Lacrosse introduced eyegear that focused on both protecting the players from nose and eye injuries while also not affecting their gameplay in any major way.

On the other hand, many still argue for more protection as they compare the amount of protective equipment boy’s lacrosse receives, including fully padded helmets. However, there is more evidence against the notion that helmets help prevent concussions. According to Weill Cornell Medicine Concussion and Brain Injury Clinic, “…although a helmet can cushion your skull, it can’t prevent your brain from moving within the skull and sustaining a concussion or other traumatic brain injury.”

Sydney Trammell, senior varsity captain of the girls lacrosse team at Parkview High School, said, “ No, I don’t think the helmets are needed because they wouldn’t necessarily decrease the amount of concussions we get. It could honestly increase the amount of concussions because if you’re wearing a helmet, you’re more likely to hit someone in the head because you think you are more protected.”