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Face Mask Requried in HS Ball?


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7 replies to this topic

#1
SpartanIlliniCub

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I came across a tweet today from the Cypress Lake High School Lady Panthers Twitter account that for the 2018 season all softball players will be required to either wear a face mask or sign a waiver.  

 

Do you all think this is a good rule?



#2
CatOsterFan

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I think this makes soooooo much sense.   Players are required to use helmets and face masks in football because of the danger and potential harm of various objects hitting you in the face.  And it's the same in softball!

 

All it takes is one perfect hit sent to the right place to cause significant, perhaps even permanent, damage.  Why risk it?  Especially at the lower levels.  There is no reason, in my mind, not to require face masks.



#3
MammaZord

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This makes total sense. High School hockey players also have to wear full-cage masks.  Is this for all field players, or just for batters and pitchers?



#4
jlurban

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See the related topics Face Masks Are Becoming the NormMandating Masks and Why the Mask?



#5
FaspitchPapa

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The risks are known.  Cages are available to players who want them.  If players do not want to wear them they should not be forced to.  Some players may genuinely not like them and think they don't play as well with them.  It's not fair to penalize those players.



#6
MammaZord

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Fastpitch Papa - I would totally agree with you if we were talking about adult athletes. However, for underage athletes, it is the team/school's duty to put safety first. Since the risks of getting hit in the face far outweighs any comfort preference, it only makes sense that face masks are becoming mandatory. 



#7
KCSoftball

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Maybe I an old school, but masks for any HS player, except the pitcher, should be voluntary! You don't see this in HS baseball, I would think just as many boys get hit as girls? 



#8
MammaZord

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KCSoftball. It totally makes sense that they would require the pitchers to wear a mask. Softball pitchers are closer to the mound than in baseball, so more apt to get hit perhaps. I am not sure why they would require field players, including outfielders, to wear a mask unless a program/school calculated the risks outweighed any athlete objection. A sensible course would be to have a team meeting before the season that included players, parents, coaches and the athletic director wherein they would all discuss the pros and cons of field players wearing masks. This way, everyone would be fully informed and able to make the best decision regarding the masks. I'm sure that this type of conversation went on at some point and at some level at school where masks have been made mandatory. 

 

I played soccer in high school, and there's not much equipment for the sport, but one thing that was outlawed was shoes with metal cleats. Pro players wear these types of shoes, and they are great because the metal helps with traction, and the cleats are interchangeable depending on conditions. However, these cleats are dangerous and cause serious damage if raked across the skin during a slide-tackle. For this reason, they are banned for high school kids who do not yet have to body control to perform precise slide tackles. I see this scenario being a lot like the masks - a decision was made higher up in order to protect the student/athletes. 

 

If softball players are made to wear masks, they will get used to it eventually. Remember when NHL players didn't even wear helmets! The game is so much faster with pucks getting airborne so often that a modern player would sustain life-threatening injuries if they didn't have helmets. If the tough NHL dudes can wear helmets, it should be no problem for high school softball players to wear masks. 






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