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2015-06-09


Football Canada places ban on Overbuilt Facemasks due to safety concerns. Click here for more information.

Overbuilt or non-standard facemasks contain more bars, smaller spaces between bars and?cover a larger area.?These particular facemasks more frequently fail the certification tests conducted by the?National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE), the organization?that approves equipment based on performance standards.?

Until NOCSAE provides their final statement regarding these types of facemasks, Football?Canada will prohibit the use of overbuilt facemasks to protect players from unnecessary risks.?

Recent research also suggests that the use of overbuilt or non-standard facemasks present?specific safety risks and should not be used. The NFL banned the use of overbuilt facemasks in?2014 and the NCAA followed their lead by banning them in 2015.?

Among the studies, Dr. Erik E. Swartz of the University of New Hampshire concluded four?primary concerns listed below:?

1). Added weight and more robust construction of the masks appear to negatively affect the?structural integrity of the helmet during impact certification tests.?

2). The added weight of the masks acts to shift the head’s centre of gravity forward. This could?have a tendency to fatigue the neck extensors and result in a head-down position during?contact and tackling. The added weight increases the head’s effective mass and may increase?rotational acceleration following impact.?

3). The additional, smaller spaces created in the mask increase the risk of another player’s?finger getting incidentally caught between the wires, potentially causing serious hand injury of?the opponent as well as neck injury of the wearer.?

4). The additional material may negatively affect a player’s behavior during contact and tackling?due to an added false sense of security.

This rule takes effect immediately, however, if the improper facemasks are noticed the?weekend of June 12, 13 and 14th and supplies are not on hand to immediately replace them, the?officials will educate the coach and player. Full enforcement is expected by our members the?weekend of June 19, 20 and 21st. ?The player/s will not be permitted to play if they do not have?the proper facemask.




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