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Commotio Cordis & Cardiac Safety

We’re proud to serve as a national leader in research support to help eliminate the risk of serious injuries like commotio cordis.

The best way to reduce the risk of commotio cordis in lacrosse is with the use of chest protection equipment that meets NOCSAE performance standard ND200.

what is Commotio cordis?

Commotio cordis is a Latin term, meaning “agitation of the heart.” It’s a rare, but serious, medical condition that is caused by low-impact trauma to the chest, including by a projectile such as a lacrosse ball or baseball. This impact can cause the heart to change its normal rhythm and lead to sudden cardiac arrest. Immediate CPR and defibrillation is necessary to restore the heart rhythm.       
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Understanding Commotio cordis

developing better protection

Beginning in 2021, USA Lacrosse boys’ and girls’ youth rules mandated that all goalie chest protectors must meet the new NOCSAE standard. It’s also mandatory in the NFHS boys’ and girls’ high school rules, and the NCAA men’s and women’s rules. Beginning in 2022, USA Lacrosse boys’ field players, NFHS boys’ field players, and NCAA men’s field players must also wear chest protection that meets the NOCSAE ND200 standard. Products are now available.

Get the FAQs on Chest Protection

the importance of AEDs and chest protection


Stryker is the official AED of USA Lacrosse and the U.S. National Teams

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Commotio cordis information from Stryker

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AED Discount Pricing

USA Lacrosse and Stryker have partnered to provide discounted pricing for USA Lacrosse member organizations. Click the link below to request more information on member-only AED savings.

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How a 15-Year-Old Influenced Maryland's Mandatory Training

Officially known as House Bill 1336 and Senate Bill 503, Maryland's mandatory AED and CPR training is more commonly known throughout the state as Breanna’s Law.

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Additional Resources

CPR and First Aid Training Kit

USA Lacrosse partnered with the American Heart Association to meet the needs of local lacrosse teams and leagues with the development of an easy-to-use CPR & First Aid in Youth Sports Training Kit. This portable training kit is designed to facilitate training for youth coaches to ensure they know the lifesaving skills of CPR, how to use an AED, and how to help during sports related emergencies.

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Chest Protection FAQs

Effective January 1, 2021, boys’ and girls’ goalkeepers must wear body padding that meets the NOCSAE performance standard for lacrosse, ND200, and as of January 1, 2022, boys’ field players must also have padding that meet the same standard.

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USA Lacrosse was the first governing body to mandate use of the NOCSAE standard. Compliance with the standard will enhance player safety and help prevent catastrophic injuries. The NCAA and NFHS also require the NOCSAE standard.

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The Story Behind a Positive Commotio Cordis Outcome

Medical personnel revived Loyola Blakefield (Md.) high school lacrosse player Peter Laake after a commotio cordis episode, highlighting the need for AEDs on site and the importance of the new chest protector standard that USA Lacrosse played a major role in helping to develop.


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