Helmet watch


I can’t stand it. I can’t stand it…

Push to make helmets mandatory for coaches grows:

Helmets have been mandatory for minor hockey players for years.

Now a move to make head protection mandatory for coaches, trainers, and volunteers is gaining strength.

Hockey Calgary is the latest to sign on.

Last year, a goalie coach suffered a near fatal fall behind the net so this season, everyone under Hockey Calgary’s jurisdiction — including coaches, trainers and even volunteers must wear a helmet when on the ice.

Violators of the new rule will be removed and even suspended if they refuse to wear a helmet.


Helmet watch

  1. You’re right. It would be much better for some guy to get corked in the head with a puck and his family sues the City of Calgary for their collective underwear.

    As the husband of a municipal worker, I know: almost every municipal H&S bylaw likely had its roots in a lawsuit (or percieved possibility of a lawsuit).

  2. Sounds like a perfectly reasonable to me. Even if we assume that adults are somehow magically incapable of being struck by a puck or falling on the ice themselves, it sets a good example.

  3. Curlers, beware.

    According to the article, the helmet rule only applies when the hockey coaches are on the ice -one presumes no pucks would be flying at them then.

    everyone under Hockey Calgary’s jurisdiction — including coaches, trainers and even volunteers must wear a helmet when on the ice.

    Probably more deaths for slipping on icy sidewalks across Canada I suspect.

  4. Next lawsuits: the new Calgary regulation failed to protect these allegedly responsible adults from their own self-negligence while behind the bench. Mark Peters, assistant coach of the Tim-Bit league Hip-Hip-Hooray team, suffered a hangnail while attemting to re-tie little Lucas Marchant’s skate. Josephine Shillet stubbed her finger reaching for the bench door. And 15-year-old Amanda Phillips, scorekeeper, suffered a near season-ending paper cut while mishandling a lineup card from the visiting Red Deer Little Rednecks. Motions to declare a class action will be heard in Alberta Superior Court next Tuesday.

  5. MDY,

    Going bare-headed isn’t an emblem of Freedom. Why not compromise? Make them wear helmets but allow them to carry firearms.

  6. I think we should all be wrapped in cotton wool, myself.

  7. I remember – not with fondness – the hockey,rugby,basketball coaches of my youth.
    For most of them the adoption of a helmet would have been too little too late.

  8. Nice appreciation of the volunteers who tried to keep you off the streets while you were a yute, Sisyphus. Real class.

  9. I think bubble-wraping might me more hypoallergenic than wool, Chris B, though certainly less eco-friendly.

    Is there an eco-chic way of being overprotected?

  10. I think the eco-chic want us all to just die already, leaving a sapienectomized planet to finally recover.

  11. Oooo… nice. Eco-chic nihilism – but is there a t-shirt? It can’t be a real movement without a t-shirt…

  12. Ice hockey is a very dangerous sport which should be banned. Let’s get back to grassy field hockey, but instead use a Nerf ball and Nerf sticks. Better yet, let’s have women’s beach bikini Nerf hockey. I know it’s sexist. If the Olympics can have women’s beach bikini volleyball, then Tuktoyuktuk can have beach bikini Nerf hockey. Helmuts not needed.

  13. That should be “Helmets not needed.” No Helmuts. Helgas are fine.

  14. Of course there is, what kind of movement would be be without?

  15. They used to say the same thing about Jacques Plante. About seat belts. About pesticides. About condoms… about… global warming.. about…

  16. But surely it’s because hockey coaches are apt to start brawling either a) with the opposing coach, b) with hockey dads, c) with their own players? In that situation, head injuries are more than a chance in a million.

  17. This helmet rule sounds reasonable, small price to pay for safety. But I’m not sure if they will see it that way, it’s bound to encounter some resistance.

  18. As someone who has coached minor hockey in Ottawa (where a city bylaw requires helmets on the ice) for four years, I can’t imagine going without. I also wear a half-visor (sorry Don Cherry).

    Anyone who has coached kids (especially young ones) can tell you that they fall. A lot. And when they do, they can easily take down an unsuspecting coach standing or skating near them. They also tend to fall with their arms and sticks flailing. I’ve taken more than one stick in the visor from a kid falling during a drill.

    I have yet to really bounce my head off the ice but I have certainly taken an unexpected tumble on the ice. Wearing a helmet just makes sense to me.

    And, as one commenter noted above, it’s a lot easier to convince the kids to do their chinstraps up tight when the coach does too.

  19. In Ottawa, they make the zamboni drivers wear helmets too. Seriously.

    You know, we’d all be safer wearing our helmets driving to work each day, wouldn’t we? What about all those preventable injuries to car drivers that don’t wear helmets. You may think that absurd, but wait by about 2030 somebody will put forward mandatory automobile helmet legislation and some politician will come out with the predictable “well if it saves just one child….”

  20. I would actually legitimately like to know the percentage and frequency of automobile accidents in which serious injuries could have been greatly reduced by wearing a helmet. there may be a case.

  21. You’re all missing the point – it’s part of a massive subliminal advertising campaign for Stephen Harper. Soon, we’ll all be wearing helmets, and he won’t look so odd…

  22. In Manitoba (last province to require motorcycle helmets, and with medical exceptions) we’ll require coaches to wear helmets unless they have a note from their doctor.

  23. Is risk management no longer a factor? As 84.2% of all life-threatening accidents incurred while showering are head injuries, helmets should be mandatory while showering. And as for allowing people to skate on the Rideau Canal without a helmet, it’s “sending the wrong message” as the totalitarians say.

    P.S. – I made up the above statistic, but it’s as good as any — if the accident is life-threatening it probably was a head injury. More people probably die falling down stair than riding motorcycles. Helmets are not mandatory in Holland, a nation of bikers, because they understand risk. Grrr…

  24. Helmets should be required for hockey, but also for many other under-regulated activities in our society — such as tobogganing, go-karting, squash, and female gymnastics. I am also familiar with another Canadian journalist who makes a strong case that helmets should be mandatory during the takeoff and landing phases of commercial airline travel. (People traveling on corporate or privately owned aircraft would be exempt form the rule … for now)

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