I've written a lot about cycling on Operation Gadget recently, but I am also heavily involved in amateur ice hockey as an on-ice official. I have been an official for about 20 years, and I currently officiate in the Atlantic Hockey League, the New Jersey Youth Hockey League, and the high school hockey leagues sanctioned by the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association.
Last week, my wife and I went shopping for a new hockey helmet for me. I chose the Bauer 4000 Hockey Helmet over many other models because of its fit and the good protection it provides. The Bauer 4000 is available in a wider variety of sizes than many other helmets. It's large and extra large sizes are bigger than those of most helmets.
The Bauer 4000 is also a "low profile" helmet. My last helmet, a CCM HT500 is visibly larger. I measured the two helmets with a tape measure and found that the circumference of the Bauer 4000 at the forehead is more than 2-inches smaller than the HT500. That's a huge difference.
I've often said that the CCM HT500 makes me look like Marvin the Martian out on the ice. The Bauer 4000 has thinner, denser padding than the HT500, but is still approved by the Hockey Equipment Certification Council. Anyone participating in any form of ice hockey should be wearing a helmet that is approved by the HECC or the Canadian Standards Association.
I'll be on the ice this weekend officiating my first games of the 2004-2005 season. If you see me out there, let me know what you think of the new lid.