Hockey Canada – the organization that sets the rules for amateur hockey leagues in Canada – has voted to eliminate bodychecking for peewee players across the country.
The ban will start in September 2013.
One of the main reasons for the ban is safety, says Paul Carson, vice-president of hockey development for Hockey Canada.
Last year, researchers at the University of Calgary found that young players are three times more likely to be injured in leagues where bodychecking is allowed than in leagues with no bodychecking.
The study showed that peewee players in Alberta, where bodychecking was allowed, suffered 209 injuries and 73 concussions.
In Quebec, where bodychecking is not allowed, there were 70 injuries and 20 concussions.