HHSAA does away with spring ‘pads’ practice

Spring practice will be done without pads for Hawaii high school football teams starting this year. In photo, Kaiser offensive lineman Michael Eletise went through a no-pads drill during spring practice last season. Eletise will be playing for the Arizona Wildcats next season. Cindy Ellen Russell / Honolulu Star-Advertiser.
Spring practice will be done without pads for Hawaii high school football teams starting this year. In photo, Kaiser offensive lineman Michael Eletise went through a no-pads drill during spring practice last season. Eletise will be playing for the Arizona Wildcats next season. Cindy Ellen Russell / Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii football teams will not be holding spring football practices in pads this year, a departure from past seasons when a period of time was set aside for that purpose.

The reason for the change for the Oahu Interscholastic Association and the the three Neighbor Islands leagues (Kauai Interscholastic Federation, Big Island Interscholastic Federation Maui Interscholastic League) is a new rule passed by the Hawaii High School Athletic Association executive board at its last meeting earlier this month. The rule is based on the safety of the players, with the thinking that players are less likely to get hurt if there are no pads and minimal contact.

The rule change does not affect the Interscholastic League of Honolulu, which does not hold spring pads practices.


Teams will continue to work out and do drills in the spring.


“With all the concussion issues we are going through, it’s only smart to cancel full pads during spring,” Campbell head coach Amosa Amosa said. “It’s going to be just like summer practices, so I’m all for it. I used to discuss this matter with my coaches because they all feel that we need to know who are the real players when the pads come on, but it’s proven and it’s very easy for us coaches to have a pretty good feel for those players who can play with or without the pads. So I’m all for the not having spring ball (with pads). Less work for the head coach also, because of issuing out the equipment and collecting it back.”

Hawaii Prep World followed up this article with another about no pads in the spring. In it, Castle head coach Nelson Maeda speaks out against the new rule. To read it click here: http://bit.ly/1OdSkAZ.

COMMENTS

  1. Aaron Kaapuni April 30, 2016 10:28 pm

    I understand the no-pad rule for spring ball, but I do not understand how this will not hurt the kids later on during the training season. This will limit the new kids in getting used to practicing in pads and may actually increase injuries because of the limited training. The kids should at the very least use helmet and shoulder pads. There’s a big difference from using pads to no pads.


  2. Nick Abramo May 1, 2016 12:19 am

    good point Aaron


  3. The Rim May 1, 2016 7:16 am

    Great point Aaron, and I will add to that by saying it adds a level of protection for some contact that will take place with or without pads. The issue is full contact and limiting full contact during spring…it shouldn’t be no-pad rule.


  4. Homom May 1, 2016 10:45 am

    ” This will limit the new kids in getting used to practicing in pads and may actually increase injuries because of the limited training. ”

    aaron, you have data for this or are you making this up?


  5. bumbucha May 1, 2016 12:52 pm

    agree w/Aaron, takes time to get aclimated to wearing equipment. The day after donning helmets, your neck is sore from lugging a 10 lb helmet. There is a degree of discomfort and getting used to running around w/shoulder pads, pants pads. Your vision is obscured looking thru a facemask, your coach is on you, then you have an opponent facing you who wants to knock the snot out of you. I believe OIA schools have 3 days of practicing w/pads on, teaching fundamentals, before they scrimmage an opponent, a very short window to practice safety. I think the suggestion of top 1/2 and add in, “with controlled tempo” is a thought worth exploring though, the AD’s & HHSAA would never go for that.


  6. AOK May 1, 2016 8:37 pm

    Sounds like HHSAA setting themselves for the inevitable OIA-ILH merger. Leveling the playing field.


  7. 91' May 26, 2016 6:12 pm

    Something about removing safety equipment to protect the kids doesn’t sound right. I don’t think the concussion epidemic was a result of padded spring practices. Football is a contact sport and spring is a perfect time to teach these kids how to use their leads and helmets for safety and not as a weapon.
    There will be many kids attending fully padded camps this summer and without a padded spring ball to warm up and refresh their technique it will put those kids in more of a dangerous position. Four days of padded practice right before the first scrimmage this summer isn’t enough time to get the neck and body ready for the full contact which will take place.
    It sounds more like the ILH complained that it wasn’t fair the OIA had these padded spring sessions. Is it really in the best interest of the kids? Almost sounds like the decision the NCAA made about satellite camps because it wasn’t fair for the SEC who couldn’t do them.


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