Equipment Guidelines

  1. Each NFHS sports rules committee is responsible for recommending the official playing rules to the NFHS Board of Directors for adoption. The committee is not responsible for testing or approving playing equipment for use in interscholastic sports. Equipment manufacturers have undertaken the responsibility for the development of playing equipment that meets the specifications established by the committee. The NFHS urges manufacturers to work with the various independent testing agencies to ensure the production of safe products. Neither the NFHS nor the applicable NFHS sport rules committee certifies the safety of any sport equipment. Only equipment that meets the dimensions and specifications in the NFHS sport rules may be used in interscholastic competition. While the committee does not regulate the development of new equipment and does not set technical or scientific standards for testing equipment, the committee may , from time to time, provide manufacturers with guidance as to the equipment-performance levels it considers consistent with the integrity of the game. The committee reserves the right to intercede to protect and maintain that integrity.
  2. Each NFHS sport rules committee suggests that manufacturers planning innovative changes in sports equipment submit the equipment to the applicable NFHS sport rules committee for review before production.
  3. Protective headgear is required by NFHS rules in some sports and is permissive in others. Hard helmets can diminish the incidence of certain head trauma, such as fractured skulls and subdural hematomas. Soft headgear can protect against lacerations, bumps and bruises. Coaches, athletes and parents should review manufacturers’ warnings about proper usage and performance limits of such products. No helmet or headgear can prevent athletes from suffering concussions, and all sports should be played, coached and officiated in recognition of that fact.