|Women's hockey was a tiny fringe sport only
two decades ago. It became established in
the Olympics during the 1990s, and a number
of colleges field excellent teams that play
a very skillful and entertaining brand of
the sport. |
This interest in women's hockey has cascaded
downward, as more and more hockey programs
for young girls have developed. Where interest
among girls is insufficient to support whole
teams and whole leagues, boys' teams often
will welcome and accommodate girls as participants.
In leagues for small children, where body
checking is limited and the kids are too
small to get hurt anyway, coed play is increasingly
accepted. The same is true in recreational
adult leagues and open hockey sessions, where
body contact is limited or prohibited by
mutual consent. This macho sport has become
remarkably welcoming of women in the ranks.
Women or girls who wish to get started in
hockey should look for clinics and camps tailored to their needs.
As noted in the section on protective equipment, the increasing number of female players
has led to the development of special protective
gear that meets their needs.