Should contact (hitting) be taken out of minor hockey?
Debate Rounds (3)
As the con; I will argue that violence in the game is not a result of contact at the youth level. While merely pointing out that sportsmanship is at an all time low in the sport, and injuries are at an all time high does not merit credibility to this being the result of youth being exposed to the physical aspect of the game. The pro will have to argue that removing contact will promote better sportsmanship and improve the overall character of the game.
1.Achilles tendon rupture
2.calf muscle tears
3.facet joint syndrome
5.hamstring strain and injuries
8.knee ligament injury
9.knee meniscus injury
This is just a few of the many injuries that could happen. now imagine that in minor league hockey sounds pretty serious and if youth are encouraged to beat on others in the form of a game does not make good character. Youth are already irresponsible, hitting will just promote violence.
Fogofwar forfeited this round.
In Canada; despite being the most popular sport; with over 520,000 players registered in Canadian Hockey Association (CHA), Canada's minor hockey association; ice hockey ranks number 3 for injuries; behind basketball and soccer.  In terms of severity of injuries; hockey ranked fourth.  Considering that there are far more children playing hockey than either of these two other sports; yet the number of injuries is lower than both; we can assume that hockey is no more dangerous than other sports.
Cricket; 5 people have died during their professional careers as a result of being struck with the ball. There has only been 3 deaths in professional hockey. In fact; heat stroke poses more risk of fatality in American Football than contact in hockey.  Surely if there are more deaths in cricket than ice hockey; one cannot call into question the number of deaths from this sport. You can also see that the majority of deaths to athletes during their career are due to car accidents . It is statistically proven that car accidents are far more dangerous to athletes than any sport related injuries. If we are to base what is acceptable on the number of fatalities; my opponent would have to be suggesting that people stop driving as well.
In fact; in recent times; the only death as a result of hockey was Don Sanderson; who died on 12 December 2008 after striking his head on the ice in a fight on ice. Because of this incident; minor league rules on fighting have changed. Fighting has never been permitted in any hockey below Junior; and as a result of this death, even in Junior hockey; it is not permitted to remove your helmet during a fight anymore.
"We should wait till a later time before allowing youth to hit others in a game."
This is a concession from my opponent; as the argument is to remove contact hitting from minor hockey altogether; not move it to a later age.
While this is another argument being made among the association of athletics; the concern is; along with the maturity level of kids; the experience required. If we were to move the age up for contact; we would be giving youth only 2 years before entering Junior league. We can see that the highest number of injuries among youth in hockey is the age group of 10-14 years.  This means two things; the maturity of the children may be a risk; however logics will tell us that the introduction of contact is also responsible due to a lack of experience. Just like driving; the highest statistics of accidents are from youth with little to no experience. If the latter is to be analyzed, we must consider the reproccussion of moving the age up for contact. The severity of injuries that do occur among youth are less severe in younger ages. By the time they reach Junior; with less experience; yet often more than 100 lbs of weight difference; one can only see that these injuries due to inexperience will cause far more damage and be much more severe.
While many argue that hitting is not required; few who do have ever played the game. Contact is essential to the game of hockey; and while many use women's hockey to rebut their claim that it is not necessary; this is a great example of why it is. Many female hockey players; even those who have played on gold medal Olympic teams feel that hitting should be allowed; as it is intrical for the game. The use of contact eliminates plays that are otherwise unavoidable; and the game is completely changed. Strategy is based on the physical nature of the game. Without it; the team who has the most skilled forward would simply leave him on the ice and win; without requiring them to strategize the game. Of course; statistical analysis also determines that injuries are the result of fatigue. Injuries are three times more likely to occur during exhibition and preseason games. 42% of injuries occur in the third period; and 47% of injuries were sustained in the final five minutes of each period.  This means such use of a player would make him more susceptible to injury anyways.
Another major aspect of the hitting is teaching youth responsibility and sportsmanship. Such acts of intentionally trying to hurt someone have never been permitted in the sport; and there have been cases of players who ended their own career by doing so. Suspension and even expulsion from leagues can occur for such acts of poor sportsmanship. It is essential that the child's parents and coach use contact to teach the child life lessons of sportsmanship and fair play. The world is based on competition; in and out of sports; and sports help children to develop social skills; leadership; work ethic, healthy competition, and increase self esteem.  There are also direct links to sports and athletics increasing intelligence.  These life lessons are crucial for healthy upbringing of children; and contact sports teach them just that. Hitting has been an integral part of hockey since the creation of the sport; and for over 100 years; children have continued to endure body contact with overall health.
Former NHL player and coach, Don Cherry; one of the greatest minds in the sport; believes the cause of injuries; particularily the increased number of head injuries is a result of the modern equipment being used. The modern protective gear is thick, dense foam, covered in a hard plastic shell. Don Cherry has noted the increase of injuries since the introduction of this equipment; and has been urging since it was introduced; that leagues should not allow it. He promotes the use of the older design; thinner soft foam pads.  The idea is that getting struck with hard shell plastic; thick, high density foam pads is a lot more impact than soft foam. The other point is that with less padding; hitters are more apt to contain their hits; because the risk of injury is equally as dangerous to themselves as it is to the opponent. It is my belief that such examination should be done; and result in safer equipment as well; instead of removing a crucial aspect of the game.
"If we banned hockey from the minor league the amount of injuries will be cut in half maybe more"
In this case; my opponent must be suggesting that we ban driving as well; as it poses a far greater risk to athletes than sports. In fact; heat stroke has killed as many people in Football as injuries from play;  so should we ban daytime as well?
If my opponent is to suggest that because the risk of injury exists; even if it is marginal; we should not partake in said activity; then he must be suggesting we live in a bomb shelter; and never venture out into the world to experience the joys of it. It is a game; and you don't need to beat people up to have fun; but you will not have fun if you live in a hole and let life pass you by without experiencing it.
4. http://aacap.org... and Sports
He mentioned that there aren't very many deaths in hockey, but what about injuries. He didn't mention injuries because he knew that the number of injuries will be so high that that would show that hitting was the cause to those injuries. And he acts like I want to ban hockey altogether. I'm just trying to ban hitting from minor league hockey. Keyword "minor".
Voters, I want you to ignore your personnel opinions and listen to the evidence I have displayed.
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