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Helmets for women's lacrosse?

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dblacklock
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby dblacklock Tue Dec 07, 2010 9:52 pm

UKLAXFAN wrote:The Umpires are the sole proprietors of the rules of the game
but even they get paid to umpire and to get the best games they must please their paymasters.
who are the very people who want to win at all costs.


First, the officials are not the sole proprietors of the rules of the game. It's the players game. That is like saying the police are the sole proprietors of the laws. They/we just enforce the rules. Players are expected to play within the confines of the rules, Like citizens they are expected to obey the laws of the land. For those that don't, they get penalized. Yes nothing is illegal until you are caught however players are responsible for their own actions.

Finally, Officials with integrity do not let a pay packet influence their calls. We may let play go a little, but do not confuse this with referees not caring about player safety. Given the greater likelihood for lawsuits when serious injuries occur, officials are trained to always make these calls. Player safety is the principal reason we do the job.

Perhaps this is a discussion for another part of the forum
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby Blind Zebra Wed Dec 08, 2010 11:31 am

the pom wrote:how did they used to deal with mens lacrosse when the main protection was just a lether cap?



By spending four hours in casualty have the stiches put in!

Now we have almost no head injuries. It was a great step forward for the game but at the time the backwoodsfolk forsaw the end of the game!

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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby oldman Wed Dec 08, 2010 3:53 pm

Another long piece in Inside Lacrosse on helmets:

http://insidelacrosse.com/news/2010/12/08/staff-debate-should-helmets-be-required-girls-lacrosse

I had missed that last week the New York State Public High School Athletic Association Safety and Research Committee met to vote on a motion made in October that would require girls lacrosse players in the state of New York to wear men's lacrosse helmets. It was well defeated [7-2] but clearly the pressure is on.

Interesting figures and stats from the New York State Public High School Athletic Association see here http://www.nysphsaa.org/safety/
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby UKLacrosse Wed Dec 08, 2010 10:37 pm

UKLacrosse has been involved one way or the other in the discussion on women's protective gear for some years.

Firstly, to correct any misunderstandings, we have never advocated the use of eyewear, nor have we sought to make a big issue of advertising them. What we have done is to have samples available for girls to see them, and to see how they would feel wearing them.

Before, and when they became mandatory in the USA, we carried out our own survey within the women’s game here in the UK. The results were very interesting –

1. The older, more experienced women in the game were almost without exception anti eye protection. They claimed that there were very few injuries in the women’s game, not to the eyes, the mouth, nor the head. Some even claimed that they would walk away from the game if these were introduced, let alone made mandatory.

2. Players, particularly the younger ones, were also anti eye protection, but mainly through not wishing to be part of a minority wearing them, though if everyone wore them then many would be ok with the concept.

3. Some younger players thought they looked pretty cool, even though they were concerned that it would affect their peripheral vision.

4. The most telling comments were that some girls suggested they would have more confidence. Therein lies one of the major issues. They are almost suggesting that they would be more likely to put themselves in danger. A point already mentioned earlier.

5. Parents of the younger players were almost unanimous in their support of their offspring wearing eye protection. A natural stance, but on what basis, if there were very few injuries anyway?

Clearly there are many points one could discuss about the women’s game. How many girls are comfortable about catching the ball close to their face? ‘Third ear’ is not a real possibility in the girl’s game.

Umpiring of the women’s game at ALL levels has to be maintained at a very high level in order to maintain safety. There is absolutely no reason to presume that umpires cannot control the game, and therefore the safety of the players. However, who on earth ever allowed men’s sticks to be used in mixed lacrosse, then debated whether it should be switched to women’s sticks only? Anyone umpiring a mixed game in those days was really taking a enormous risk from a legal standpoint.

Stick rules have been implemented internationally to take account of the advances made in women’s sticks, in an attempt to prevent the safety barriers being pushed too wide. However, there are still a large number of illegal women’s sticks being advertised for sale, and being used blatantly at all levels of the game. Why?

The probability is that eye protection is likely to be seen more and more outside the US. The reason being liability and insurance. Any junior programme, whether at school or club, have a ‘duty of care’ requirement to ensure that the players are aware of the dangers, and what protection is available to counter those dangers. It amazes me that some even consider hiring eye protection when they travel to the US. Second-hand or used eye protection has litigation written all over it.

As suppliers of lacrosse equipment, we have no wish to see the women’s game change dramatically. The wearing of any protection could give greater confidence to players to put themselves in dangerous positions, therefore making umpiring even more difficult than it already is. Players are becoming much fitter and stronger leading to a more physical game in the US. We now see the signs of that happening here, and the one control over that is the rule book, and the umpires who implement the rules.
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby oldman Thu Dec 09, 2010 11:00 am

UKLacrosse wrote:It amazes me that some even consider hiring eye protection when they travel to the US. Second-hand or used eye protection has litigation written all over it.


Ski hire companies seem to be able to hire safe and legally acceptable kit, I am particularly thinking of boots and bindings, both in Europe and in the USA. Equally no-one seems to question the hire of diving kit, another set of highly technical safety gear, so I can't see why there should be a problem with hiring good quality, well maintained eye wear which is fairly low-tech.
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby UKLacrosse Thu Dec 09, 2010 11:52 am

oldman wrote:
UKLacrosse wrote:It amazes me that some even consider hiring eye protection when they travel to the US. Second-hand or used eye protection has litigation written all over it.


Ski hire companies seem to be able to hire safe and legally acceptable kit, I am particularly thinking of boots and bindings, both in Europe and in the USA. Equally no-one seems to question the hire of diving kit, another set of highly technical safety gear, so I can't see why there should be a problem with hiring good quality, well maintained eye wear which is fairly low-tech.


Totally valid argument, but I'm sure that they have documented protocols to cover themselves. I'm not sure with eyewear, or dare I say it, helmets as well, that there are any maintenance protocols available, let alone spare parts.
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby oldman Thu Dec 09, 2010 12:36 pm

UKLacrosse wrote:Totally valid argument, but I'm sure that they have documented protocols to cover themselves. I'm not sure with eyewear, or dare I say it, helmets as well, that there are any maintenance protocols available, let alone spare parts.


I take it you are not suggesting that it would be difficult, or onerous to produce documented protocols for something as mechanically simple as eye guards. Or, for that matter, that it would take a huge amount of training to bring a "technician" up to speed with what needs checking on eye guards.There really aren't that many spare parts for eye guards. That's the whole point, they are very simple bits of kit.

I worry that sales of kit like this are being promoted by "fear of litigation" rather than true safety benefits.
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby skippy Thu Dec 09, 2010 2:25 pm

oldman wrote:I worry that sales of kit like this are being promoted by "fear of litigation" rather than true safety benefits.


I think that is the crux of it- there does seem a heightened sensitivity to the worry of litigation over what is necessary and sensible in a sport environment. Injuries happen in virtually every sport but it is not within the interests of the game to cover every angle. With women's lacrosse you have to balance the areas most at risk with what would be least invasive to the way the game is played- like wearing eye-protection in (for example) squash, goggles reduce the risk of permanent eye injury- similarly women's lacrosse players are required to wear mouthguards (and IMO men's should be), which greatly reduces the risk of tooth and head injury. Moving beyond these two 'required' pieces of protective equipment in the women's game is unnecessary and of course would lead to the change in nature of the game.

Rules being changed due to a number of injuries that is relatively uncommon in the wider picture is surely more of a reflection of the way litigartion has become overly used in sport in the last few years...
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby wildcat Wed Dec 14, 2011 6:49 pm

OK non believers.
http://insidelacrosse.com/news/2011/12/14/womens-lacrosse-new-study-supports-protective-eyewear

Have a read. In summary, Goggles reduce the number of injuries.
If you want the full article pm me, and I can email it to you.

When is English Lacrosse going to latch on, catch up and mandate protective eyewear?


ABSTRACT OF ARTICLE
Background: In an effort to minimize the risk of catastrophic eye injury, US Lacrosse initiated mandatory use of protective eyewear in women’s lacrosse in the 2004-2005 season.
Purpose: The authors compared eye injury rates in girls’ scholastic lacrosse before and after implementation of protective eyewear. They also compared head/face injury rates, concussion rates, and overall injury rates before and after the rule change to assess possible unintended consequences of the change.
Study Design: Cohort study; Level of evidence, 3.
Methods: The study group included female scholastic lacrosse players in the 25 public high schools in Fairfax County, Virginia, during the 2004-2009 spring seasons. Injury rates were compared with those from the same data source for the 2000-2003 seasons. Premandate versus postmandate injury rates were adjusted for athlete exposures, or total opportunities for injury throughout the season.
Results: The rate of eye injuries was reduced from 0.10 injuries per 1000 athlete exposures (AEs) in 2000 through 2003 before the use of protective eyewear to 0.016 injuries per 1000 AEs in 2004 through 2009 (incident rate ratio [IRR], 0.16; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.06-0.42). The rate ratio of head/face injuries excluding concussion also decreased (IRR, 0.44; 95% CI, 0.26-0.76). There was no change in the rate ratio of total injuries involving all body parts (IRR, 0.93; 95% CI, 0.82-1.1) after introduction of protective eyewear. However, the rate ratio of concussion increased (IRR, 1.6; 95% CI, 1.1-2.3).
Conclusion: The use of protective eyewear in women’s lacrosse was associated with a reduction in the number of eye injuries. The number of head/face injuries decreased in this study group after introduction of protective eyewear, and there was no change in overall injury rates.
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby rpowell Wed Dec 14, 2011 7:26 pm

wildcat wrote:OK non believers.
Have a read. In summary, Goggles reduce the number of injuries.

"The number of head/face injuries decreased in this study group after introduction of protective eyewear"

Er, not quite. There are lies, there are damned lies, and then there are academic studies... neither of the above statements are supported by the figures quoted at that url.

1) The numbers show a reduction in the number of eye injuries. OK, not unexpected. Goggles would have to be pretty rubbish to increase the number of eye injuries.

2) But the numbers also show an increase in the number of concussions. The authors speculate on the possible causes of this, but were unable to determine a definitive reason.

3) They state that the number of head injuries went down - but only the number of head injuries excluding concussion. I'm sorry, but that's a bit like saying "my shooting percentage is really good, if you exclude the shots that weren't on target"...

4) Worse than that, they state that the game didn't get rougher because the overall injury rate stayed the same - that conclusion is not supported by their own figures.
The overall injury rate will be: (eye injuries) + (face/head injuries excluding concussion) + (concussion) + (rest of body injuries).
So, let's do some basic mathematics here - if the overall injury rate stays the same, and the eye injury rate has gone down by 90%, there's got to be one or more of the other categories going up. Concussion definitely did, how about the others?

You need to take this sort of report with a pinch of salt - here's another view, ever so slightly cynical, which can be supported by the results:
"A study funded by US Lacrosse came up with a conclusion that supports a US Lacrosse policy"
"Goggles significantly reduced eye injuries, but the game got rougher, and other parts of the body got injured more".

The real question is whether the womens game are prepared to accept an increasingly physical sport, in order to reduce a specific area of concern (eye injuries).
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby wildcat Wed Dec 14, 2011 10:36 pm

If you were to read the whole paper, they go into more details about some of the points you raise, that are not delved into on the inside lacrosse website.

- so eyes - irreplaceable, though that low resolution http://vision.wicab.com/technology/ tongue 'brainport' was quite neat, shown on tv the other week.
In the paper they also state:
"4 out of the 5 injuries to eyes post mandatory eye protection occurred whilst not wearing goggles, or previous versions of eyewear"
"injuries to the eye globe, eyelid, eyebrow and eye orbit were virtually eliminated"

- concussions - the definition remains a bit pink and fluffy and is definitely diagnosed more frequently for injuries that previously (perhaps 5-10 years ago) you would have been TTFO by a doctor. It has been shown to be increasingly more frequently diagnosed across other sports including contact sports. By the same inference it may have gone up without protective eyewear. We'll never know, unless someone has some English data?! not a hope....

You basic maths is also off. If, for example, something goes down by 90%, and is 10 to start with, it goes goes down to 1.
If the total is a couple hundred thousand (Athletic Events = every game or practice), and you add the 9, the missing numbers get eaten up in percentages.

Agree - take it with a (small) pinch of salt, but this is the best evidence to date.
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby rpowell Wed Dec 14, 2011 11:10 pm

wildcat wrote:If you were to read the whole paper...

I'll take you up on your kind offer of sending the paper - I'd like to see it

wildcat wrote:You basic maths is also off. If, for example, something goes down by 90%, and is 10 to start with, it goes goes down to 1.
If the total is a couple hundred thousand (Athletic Events = every game or practice), and you add the 9, the missing numbers get eaten up in percentages.

Not quite - I was saying that one or more of the other categories went up. Doesn't really matter whether we're talking about 10 incidents or 10 thousand - the problem is that the article indicates that any reduction in eye-related injuries (whether they went down by 1, 10, or 100) has been offset by increases elsewhere.

I do take your point that eye injuries tend to be more serious than most other categories.

ELA (or even UK-wide) figures - ah well - the problem here is that there are so few of us! Even if we did record injury type, I doubt we'd get statistically useful numbers...
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby wildcat Wed Dec 14, 2011 11:26 pm

rpowell wrote:
wildcat wrote:If you were to read the whole paper...

I'll take you up on your kind offer of sending the paper - I'd like to see it

EMAIL?
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Re: Helmets for women's lacrosse?

Postby UKLacrosse Thu Dec 15, 2011 1:54 am

It will be interesting to see how the 'eye protection' issue is affected by the possible changes in stick rules. As pointed out elsewhere there is talk of the NCAA/ FIL/ US Lacrosse discussing possible changes which may bring about a single set of stick rules applicable to women's lacrosse universally. If that is slanted to the current US rules, or even shifts the balance away from the current FIL rules towards the US rules, then we may see the 'eye protection' issue needing to be addressed. All of this assumes that the original basis of the FIL rules was 'safety'.
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