Football

State-of-the-art helmets ensure safety in Hamilton football


Thanks to a major grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation, minor footballers from across the city are now equipped with state-of-the-art helmets and are all set to attend evaluation camps as the fall Hamilton Football Association (HFA) season looms a month and a half away.

Ryan Moggach, 12, of East Hamilton Mountain, was one of hundreds of minor footballers who attended equipment-fitting sessions at Eastwood arena last weekend as the Hamilton Football Association handed out brand-new football helmets purchased through an Ontario Trillium Foundation grant.  (Photo: HFA)

Ryan Moggach, 12, of East Hamilton Mountain, was one of hundreds of minor footballers who attended equipment-fitting sessions at Eastwood arena last weekend as the Hamilton Football Association handed out brand-new football helmets. (Photo: HFA)

The first wave of minor football players registered for the fall season of HFA play were fitted for helmets and other equipment last weekend at Eastwood arena. HFA Director of Football Operations Joe Sardo explains that the HFA will be acquiring close to 400 helmets from manufacturers Schutt and Riddell thanks in part to the two-year, $118,600 Trillium grant and those helmets are being fitted by coaches specially trained for the task. Many of the HFA coaches have received certification for proper equipment-fitting techniques offered by Dan Dudeck, who has Equipment Management Certified credentials and operates the Contact to Contact program.

The HFA has taken the lead nationally to ensure the game played in the city is as safe as possible, Sardo notes. The HFA is Canada’s first football organization to institute a comprehensive Safe Contact program. The HFA has held two Safe Contact clinics for its coaches at which basic principles are being retaught to ensure that the player’s head is effectively removed from tackling and blocking.

“As a parent with young children in the game, knowing that HFA will have certified coaches and a real intelligence for the proper fundamentals of football will be comforting. Making sure our helmets fit properly to maximize protection is an important component of our program this season.”

Jonathan Merchan, 13, of the West Hamilton Mountain, is fitted by a coach specially trained for the task.  The HFA will be acquiring close to 400 helmets thanks in part to the two-year Trillium grant. (Photo: HFA)

Jonathan Merchan, 13, of the West Hamilton Mountain, is fitted by a coach specially trained for the task. The HFA will be acquiring close to 400 helmets thanks in part to the two-year Trillium grant. (Photo: HFA)

The HFA spring season recently wrapped up and registrations for the fall sessions of Rep and Minor Development (grassroots) are now being accepted. Players and parents can sign up online at jrticats.com or contact Danielle Baboth at danielle780@hotmail.com or 905-977-7109 or Dave Dowsett at davedowsett2@gmail.com.

An in-person registration session will also be held July 12 at Eastwood arena from 10am-12:30 pm.

Football Hamilton was initiated by a merger agreement of 33 years of history for Hamilton Wentworth Football Association and 50 years for Hamilton Minor Football Association. Operating as the Hamilton Football Association (HFA), Football Hamilton includes a varsity and grassroots division with one vision and a comprehensive football program for ages 7-22.

For more information about the Hamilton Football Association visit: footballhamilton.com or jrticats.com.

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