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USA Hockey to Require Use of Neck Laceration Protection

By Massachusetts Hockey, 01/30/24, 2:45PM EST


DUXBURY, MA - January 30, 2024 - At the USA Hockey Board of Directors meeting on January 28th, 2024, the USA Hockey Congress has approved legislation that will require the use of neck laceration protection for all players 18 years old and under as well as for on ice officials under the age of 18. This rule will be effective as of August 1, 2024 and is required for all games and practices.

Massachusetts Hockey, an affiliate of USA Hockey, will practice this new rule put forth by USA Hockey and all programs under Massachusetts Hockey will be required to follow this rule as well.

Please read USA Hockey’s full statement on the use of neck laceration protection below:

The USA Hockey Congress today approved legislation requiring the use of neck laceration protection for players in all age classifications, other than adults, in games and practices, as well as for on-ice officials under the age of 18, effective August 1, 2024. For clarity, the requirement includes players in the youth, girls and junior age classifications.

USA Hockey has long recommended the use of neck laceration protection, as well as cut-resistant socks, sleeves or undergarments. The USA Hockey Board of Directors asked the organization’s Safety and Protective Equipment Committee in November 2023 to begin the process of recommending potential rule changes related to neck laceration protection.

“Safety is always at the forefront of our conversations and the action of our Congress today reflected that,” said Mike Trimboli, president of USA Hockey. “We appreciate the significant work done by our Safety and Protective Equipment Committee, led by Dr. Mike Stuart, and the many others who were instrumental in the overall evaluation process.”

“I know throughout our organization, the overwhelming opinion was that the time is appropriate to modify our rules related to neck laceration protection,” said Pat Kelleher, executive director of USA Hockey. “We’re also encouraged that the hockey industry is committed to continuing to work to improve the cut resistant products that protect players to help influence the safest possible landscape for the game.”

The legislation passed today also strongly recommends use of neck laceration protection by adult players.

For more information, including frequently asked questions, click here.

If you have any questions about this updated policy, please reach out player Safety Coordinator, Nicole Siglin at