Florida Mandates Helmets

July 5, 2017

The Florida High School Athletic Association is the first in the country to introduce a rule regarding helmet use for girls’ lacrosse teams. Although it’s intended to increase players’ safety, the new rule has been met with resistance within portions of the lacrosse community.

“We have a sport growing faster [in Florida] then the number of knowledgeable coaches viable for it,” Beth Donovan, head girls’ lacrosse coach at Cardinal Newman High School  told the Sun Sentinel. “We have well intentioned people who want to help the sport grow, but they don’t know how to properly teach players how to check. With officials, there needs to be more education for checking and how we can hold players accountable during the game.”

Along with potentially increasing physicality of play, coaches are concerned about the financial implications that helmets may bring. The cost per helmet is roughly $140, which could add up for programs.

“One of the things lacrosse has been criticized for is being a sport of privilege,” Donovan told the Sun Sentinel. “The FHSAA is being short-sighted—because you’re changing a sport that was relatively accessible to one that’s now very expensive to get into.”

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