Lacrosse helmets lose and re-gain certification

Sean Christman

warrior regulatorRecently, the safety certifications for two new lacrosse helmets have been revoked. The Cascade R and Warrior Regulator both had their safety certifications revoked by the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE),who certifies lacrosse helmets. This comes at an interesting time in the lacrosse world, as a competing company, STX, has just released their first helmet ever.

Upon the release of the Stallion 150, STX’s first helmet, a post went up on their website claiming that helmets created by Cascade and Warrior had failed many NOCSAE tests, while the STX helmet had passed. This raised many questions. At the time, it seemed to many lacrosse players as though it was just a marketing ploy by STX, as no statement had come out from NOCSAE.

However, a few days later, a statement was released announcing that the Warrior Regulator and Cascade R had lost their NOCSAE safety certification. Immediately, Cascade released a follow-up statement saying that they were working to come up with a quick solution to the issue and get the R re-certified. Warrior, on the other hand, had remained relatively quiet.

According to the Cascade statements, the issue is with the way that the R is fitted on the test dummies that NOCSAE uses to test helmets. The R was initially certified upon its release. When STX released their helmet, they performed testing on the Regulator and R at an independent lab, and both helmets failed to reach certification while the Stallion 150 passed.

What happened next? Well, Cascade was able to come up with a solution that allows for the R to be used for this spring season. Any customer who has previously purchased a Cascade R can send it to Cascade for free, and Cascade will re-certify the helmet and place and indelible sticker that shows it has been re-certified.

Warrior had remained relatively silent, but recently announced a solution. They sent NOCSAE more Regulator helmets to be tested, and after the retesting, the Regulator is now recertified. They have also announced the release of the Regulator II, which is very similar to the original Regulator and is also NOCSAE certified.

At the end of the day, Cascade and Warrior were able to fix the issue created by the release of the STX Stallion. All three manufacturers can now release their helmets with the certification from NOCSAE. Players do not have to worry about their safety when wearing any of these helmets, which is a victory for both players and manufacturers.

If you are a Malvern player who happens to use the R, you will have to get it re-certified on your own. According to Coach John McEvoy, “Malvern can not send the helmets to be re-certified. It is the players’ responsibility to do so.”  Any Malvern player who uses an R will need to have it re-certified in order to be able to play in games.