confident, and a great role model.
Congratulations Ana, you’re our Spotlight Athlete.
- Ana, 12, plays for Rosewell Middle School.
- She enjoys playing the sport she loves, and hope to continue to improve her skills.
- When Ana isn’t on the field, she enjoys spending time with her friends.
New FHSAA regulation makes headgear mandatory for all scholastic girls’ lacrosse players
If you’re a Florida resident and play high school-level girls lacrosse, headgear is required … and there are no exceptions.
That’s because of a new Florida High School Athletic Association rule, effective in the upcoming 2018 season – practice for which starts in just eight months. During the recently concluded 2017 season, girls were permitted to compete with protection no more substantial than a padded headband. But if they haven’t done so already, players – likely with input from parents, coaches, and athletic directors – must now acquire an entirely new piece of equipment.
It’s essential to note that not just any headgear will do – and the cage-like helmets worn by boys’ lacrosse players are not acceptable. Only those helmets that meet the ASTM International (formerly the American Society for Testing and Materials) F3137 specification are acceptable under this mandate – which is the first of its kind in the U.S. In fact, only two helmets meet the very specific requirements to be certified for use in girls’ scholastic lacrosse in Florida. And one of these is the product from Hummingbird Sports.
“I have two daughters, and between sticks swinging and a flying around, I wouldn’t let them on the field without having their heads protected,” explains Rob Stolker, founder and owner of Hummingbird Sports. “If we’ve learned anything recently about the risks athletes face, it’s that head injuries are common and can have far reaching ramifications. That’s why we developed our helmet – to keep girls as safe as possible out on the lacrosse field.”
Hummingbird’s soft-sided helmets feature Windpact’s Crash CloudTM technology, designed specifically to reduce the impact of blows to the head. Windpact was founded by former NFL All-Pro cornerback Shawn Springs, now the company’s CEO, who is passionate about helping to protect current and future athletes.
Featuring 18 distinct cooling vents and a ponytail opening, Hummingbird’s helmets also have a removable, spin dial for a snug, comfortable fit. In addition, they work with a player’s existing goggles. Hummingbird’s helmets are adjustable, and come in three sizes – XS, S/M, and L.
Those seeking to purchase one or multiple helmets – or simply looking for more information on Hummingbird Sports – can visit www.hummingbirdsports.com or call (888) 501-1590 .
“Once the 2018 season begins in Florida, there will suddenly be thousands of girls playing the game with headgear,” Stolker adds. “My suspicion is that as soon as decision-makers in other state athletic associations take notice – along with parents and local school boards, one state after another will establish similar mandates. And by doing so, they’ll be helping to a huge number of young people from potentially serious injury.”
It’s always fun to see our gear in use. We recently saw the talented Babylon Varsity team at practice sporting some of our favorite headgear. Take a look at the pictures we snapped to see how these helmets perform in real-life. If you have any pictures of you wearing Hummingbird attire, we are always on the lookout with the hashtag #girlslaxhero or tag us at @hummingbird_sports.
“At the outer edges of endurance sports, something interesting is happening: women are beating men”
Rory Bosio proved to everyone that she has what it takes to compete on a global scale when she made her mark in August of 2013. Bosio competed in the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc, a 106-mile course through the French, Swiss, and Italian Alps that climbs more than 33,000 feet.
“She trailed well behind the leaders for the first six hours. But as the race stretched into the evening and most competitors slowed, Bosio held her pace. When the American runner in pink shoes and a blue running skirt crossed the finish line in 22 hours 37 minutes, she’s destroyed the women’s record by 2.5 hours!”
She finished seventh overall, becoming the first woman to crack the top ten at the event as well as beating dozens of elite pro men.
As mentioned in the Outside Online article, this isn’t the first time that a woman has broke through at a major endurance competition. There was Pam Reed, who won consecutive 135-mile ultramarathons. Amelia Boone, who took second overall at the World’s Toughest Mudder. Lael Wilcox, who became the first woman to win the Trans Am, a 4,300-mile unsupported cycling sufferfest from Oregon to Virginia.
“[Wilcox] completed the route in just over 18 days after passing Greek rider Steffen Streich in the middle of the final night. When she caught him, Streich proposed that they ride together to the finish. Her response: ‘No way, it’s a race.’” Talk about girl power.
“In one weekend this past December, women runners took five outright victories in ultramarathons across the country, with 42-year-old Caroline Boller setting a new course record at the Brazos Bend 50-mile trail race in Texas.”
The point in all of this isn’t to say that women are better than men, or that one sex is more superior than the other. But rather, it is to prove that women are a lot tougher than a lot of people realized.
“Women have smaller muscles, but their muscles don’t tire as quickly.”
Whether it’s playing lacrosse, working a 12-hour shift, or being a full-time mom, we know that women are masters of endurance and capable of working hard for long periods of time. However, there’s still not a lot of research out there to clearly illustrate what we already know.
“While women do appear to have some biological advantages in endurance, those advantages remain poorly understood because of a lack of research.”
Whatever the case, women are tough. We can do it all and not grow tired of it. We can fight harder, endure longer, and finish faster because we’ve got the right stuff. Our favorite quote from the Outside article was this:
“All these guys will go out hot, and hours later I catch them,” says endurance athlete Rebecca Rusch. “They always ask, ‘Why do you start so slowly?’ And I answer, ‘Why do you finish so slowly?’”
In life or in sports, we love this answer.
In honor of International Women’s Day, we took a moment to think about some athletic women and the heroes they were. On a day in which we stand with everyone who is striving for equal rights and opportunities for women, these four remind us that we can play, run and achieve with the best of them. Regardless of gender, race, religion, political views, or job titles, we can all stand together in celebration of women.
Regarded by many in the sport as one of the greatest female tennis players of all time, the hall-of-fame tennis star’s accolades include 39 Grand Slam titles, including 12 singles, 16 women’s doubles, and 11 mixed doubles titles. King is an advocate for gender equality and has long been a pioneer for equality and social justice. King has also received the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Sunday Times Sportswoman of the Year lifetime achievement award.
Voted the greatest female athlete of all-time by Sports Illustrated for Women magazine, Jackie Joyner-Kersee holds three gold, one silver, and two bronze Olympic medals. After retiring as a competitive athlete, Joyner-Kersee has been involved with many philanthropic efforts. She is also one of the most famous athletes to have overcome severe asthma.
Two-time Olympic gold medalist and FIFA Women’s World Cup champion, Abby Wambach is a six-time winner of the U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year award. She currently stands as the highest all-time goal scorer for the national team and holds the world record for international goals for both female and male soccer players with 184 goals. Wambach was awarded the 2012 FIFA World Player of the Year, becoming the first American woman to win the award in ten years. She was included on the 2015 Time 100 list as one of the most influential people in the world. In 2011, she became the first ever soccer player of either gender to be named Athlete of the Year by the Associated Press.
As the most successful woman in the history of American open-wheel racing, Patrick is a pioneer. In 2013, she became the first female NASCAR driver to win a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series pole, turning in the fastest qualifying lap since 1990. She has been named the Rookie of the Year as well as garnering multiple awards and accolades.
Note from Hummingbird Sports:
We were at a competition in Florida where we were approached by Taylor. When she saw that we were wearing helmets while playing she expressed relief that women’s lacrosse was trending to use better safety gear and volunteered the story below of her own head injury sustained while playing lacrosse. Her story, and attitude toward an active and safe lifestyle continues to be our inspiration. The photographs and story are posted here with her permission.
My name is Taylor Triolo. I was in a bad lacrosse accident on September 27th, 2015 that lead me to never be able to play again. When I was 16 years old I was playing in an off-season game. Everything was fine until the incident had occurred. From my memory of the incident I was playing on the field and then the next second I’m being strapped onto a gurney wearing a neck brace and waiting for a helicopter to pick me up. I woke up terrified because I didn’t know what was going on. From that point paramedics told me I got hit in the head to the point where I was unconscious for 15 minutes. I was so confused and out of it that I couldn’t understand what they were saying to me. As they were telling me what had happened they were pushing me to the ambulance to start an IV to have an entrance into my body in case I had a seizure so they could give me medicine right away. Once the IV was in they let my dad and mom in one at a time to see me. I didn’t understand why they were crying, all I knew was that I had a migraine and my neck had this strong pain. The helicopter finally came and transported me to the nearest hospital where I got CAT scans and was examined by multiple doctors. I remembered being rolled into that trauma room and seeing over 10 doctors waiting for me to arrive to start treating me. When I got my results luckily there was no bleeding or anything, it was just a really bad concussion and I was discharged that night.
I was only supposed to miss two days maximum of school. The doctor suggested that but those two days turned into three weeks of absences and leaving early from school on multiple days. During that time my coach checked up on me and told me how this happened. When I was going for the ground ball I got up and I hit the defenders hip, pushing my head backwards, and when I fell I hit the back of my head as well as the pushing my head forward. So not only did I get hit in the head from the front and back, I also had a whiplash effect to my neck giving me two small bulged discs. The whole incident occurred because girls’ lacrosse has no helmets. All we had was a foam headband that didn’t do anything to help because I wore it while it happened and I was still injured badly.
Now, over a year later, I still show symptoms of my concussion. Within that year I have been to three different neurologists, two physical therapists, one pain management individual (where I had to get eight injections in my neck and part of my scalp to get rid of pain), and two orthopedics. Besides the big hospital trip on the day of the accident, I have gone back to the hospital 3-5 times for pain. I had stop going to doctors because I heard the same thing every time I went. I heard there’s nothing we can do and we just have to watch, and no playing sports. What the doctors were saying about me was just so bad for me to hear that I didn’t want to go anymore because I don’t want to keep hearing that there’s nothing we can do. Meanwhile I’m in pain 24/7. I can’t remember one pain-free day I’ve had since the injury occurred. And it continues to this day.
Read the article from when I was picked up on the field from our local news.
In the picture of me in the green jersey that picture was taken a moment before I got a concussion just six months before the major one occurred and as you can see I’m wearing the headband. The picture on the right of that is me after the injury which is why the doctor doesn’t want me playing again because I had two concussions within six months.
To improve athletic performance, regular workouts are essential — but when it comes to planning a workout for a female teenage athlete, knowing where to start can be a challenge. The American College of Sports Medicine encourages all teenagers to get at least one hour of aerobic exercise five to seven days a week, plus two to three days of resistance training over the course of a week to boost athletic performance. Stretching after workouts can also improve athletic ability and prevent the occurrence of serious injuries.
Women may have a harder time recovering from concussion, a new study suggests. Women are more likely than men to end up in the “miserable minority” of people whose brain injury symptoms linger for years…
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