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September 16, 1998

Over the past 10 years of playing Ringette, I have often heard, "Why not play hockey", or "Ringette is for whimps".

Where did this preconceived, programmed response come about this sport?

Is there anyone out there that can give me a good solid reason why this is said about Ringette? Most can't, which is why I think Ringette should get another look.

Did you realize that Canadian Olympic Female hockey stars Judy Diduck and Mannon Rheume, both got their start in Ringette along with several others?

At first glance, Ringette and hockey look fairly similar. They both are played on ice with 5 skaters, a goalie, referee's, the same equipment, and require strong skating and stickhandling skills. That's where the similarities end.

The games' have totally different sets of rules. Ringette stresses more on total team play rather than on a few skilled players. The ring must be passed over both blue lines, which give all 6 players on the ice an oppertunity to play the ring. The goaltenders have their own space in front of the net and no one, not even their own teammates can enter the crease without a violation call.

The emphasis on manditory equipment makes Ringette a safer sport than hockey. The new Ringette Canada approved face masks, offer the most protection from accidental high-sticks. The stick WILL NOT go through the mask.

More to come later....

Michelle Parkin

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