Designed to lower the impact forces of head-on contact, it’s easy to see why women’s lacrosse helmets are growing in popularity. As an optional piece of equipment in most leagues, it is frequently up to players if they want to wear one. If you choose to make a lacrosse helmet part of your go-to gear, here are some things to know.
US Lacrosse requires any headgear worn to meet the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) performance standard F3137. Manufacturers have to submit testing results in order to be approved.
One of the mandated pieces of equipment in women’s lacrosse is protective eyewear. If you choose to wear a helmet, there are two options for correlating eyewear. Some helmets are manufactured with a built-in goggle attachment. With this integrated system, only one piece of gear is needed and because of the design of the mask, your eye protection won’t be pressing against your face.
The other style of helmet does not cover any parts of the face and are designed to accommodate your favorite eyewear without causing discomfort.
HAIR AND VENTILATION HOLES
In order to accommodate players with longer hair, many lacrosse helmets feature openings throughout the design to allow for players to sport a variety of hairstyles you feel best wearing during gametime, from high and low ponytails to braids.
Along with hair openings, helmets typically feature a series of air vents along the top and sides of the outer shell. These ventilation openings help to accelerate airflow, keeping players cool and comfortable.
FLEXIBLE INTERIOR PADDING
Along the interior of women’s lacrosse helmets is padding made up of material that contours easily to the shape and movements of a player’s head. The flexibility of the padding is designed to help absorb and disperse impact that may occur while on the field.
The sizing of your lacrosse helmet will vary between different models. Some helmet styles come in multiple sizes that are based on head circumference. Others are created to be one-size-fits-all. Understanding how to size and adjust your helmet can help you get the right fit before your lacrosse season starts.
To choose from helmet models that come in a range of sizes, you will need to know the circumference of your head. To measure it, wrap a flexible tape measure or string around the largest portion of your head – this will be about an inch above your eyebrows. A small/medium sized helmet will typically fit heads that fall into the range of about 18″ to 21.5″ while a head with a circumference of 21.5″ and above will usually fit into a large.
Even helmets with multiple sizes will often have features that allow you to get a more customized fit. Use the adjustable dial to get a snug fit that stays in place.
Helmets that come in one size tend to include more adjustable features to ensure that you get the fit that you need. A rear adjustable strap is available to help players tighten to their head circumference. In addition, interchangeable cheek pad sets come in different sizes to help keep the helmet secure on your face.
You can determine if your lacrosse helmet is fitting properly by taking note when you move around. The helmet should fit snug on your head and not slide or move when you shake The padding of the helmet should offer firm, even pressure. It should have a tight fit, but not to the point that it causes discomfort.
Although helmets are not yet required in most women’s leagues, some players may feel more comfortable with that extra piece of protective gear. Headgear comes in a few different styles, but protecting yourself on the field is always in fashion.