Helmet or Not to Helmet?
Currently, headgear is OPTIONAL for field players (except goalies). Some players feel more confident with one on, while other girls do not want to wear them. Since this is optional, it is best to educate oneself on the matter of helmets for girls with regards to lacrosse and make a decision that is best based on your thoughts on the matter. Putting a helmet on a player in no way guarantees that a player won't get a concussion. Furthermore, if a player chooses to wear a helmet, it is absolutely recommended that she discuss with the strength and training coach so that additional exercises for the neck will be added to their training.
The following article gives both sides' opinions, as well as a brief history regarding the matter of headgear for girls. It is a still a huge debate in the lacrosse world and many different opinions are out there. Different articles circulating on the matter give different facts with regards to the number of concussions seen in girls lacrosse as well as if adding the option of helmets is making an impact in decreasing concussion numbers or not. Feel free to read this article to give you a basis on the idea to help make a personal decision for your player. This is but just one article. Searching the internet will prove to show many.
If you do opt to purchase a helmet, be sure you check out to find the list of legal helmets and that you choose a girl's helmet and the helmet should be WHITE. It is different than the boys' helmets. Helmets should include the mandatory eyewear.
We take concussions seriously at all levels. All coaches are required to participate in concussion testing each year to be as knowledgeable as possible on the subject with regards to diagnosis and protocol. We also insist our parents have all the information they need to understand concussions and how to watch for symptoms, and what to do when you suspect a concussion.
For high school, the school provides access to an incredible UPMC training staff. The team will know the trainers very well. Every two seasons, the girls are required to take a baseline testing and this is provided by the school. It is mandatory. Should a concussion (or any injury) occur, the trainers will follow the player's from start to finish and help transition them back into the game when they are cleared by their doctor.
Please note, that all coaches will ALWAYS err on the side of extreme caution, and at times, it may seem overcautious. Although we all know that every bump or hit to the head does not result in concussion, we will insist that they are seen by the trainer and allow them to make the call regarding further treatment. While this may seem excessive, it is in your daughter's best interest, and this is all that matters.
All coaches at all levels obtain certifications in order to help identify concussions, however, it is not on them to treat.