As a parent – who looks forward to his son participating in some form of little league competition – there’s one common concern — their overall safety.  As we look back over the last few years – there have been several instances when severe injuries have plagued our youth and/or at the collegiate level in sports.  The worse possible feeling is sitting there and watching the aftermath of your child or favorite athlete injured in a contact sport.  That’s when you tend to wonder “could the competition committee done something differently to protect its athletes on the field”.  Today, I’m looking forward to enjoying #HockeyDay on @NHLonNBCSports which will telecast 9+ hours of excitement.  In a few weeks, I’m traveling to North Carolina and will enjoy the New York Rangers vs Carolina Hurricanes at the RBC Center.   Yes, my Mark Messier #11 jersey (six-time Stanley Cup champion) will be accompanying me for the trip.

Now – what’s a hockey player’s most vital piece of equipment – it’s the helmet.  Today, we’ll discuss The Messier Project and its M11 / PRO Helmet. (Available in S – M – L sizes)  The M11 helmet, which debuted in 2009 is a collaboration between Mark Messier – hockey icon (who else can you name besides Gary Carter that’s beloved by two fan bases) and Cascade Sports – the head protection experts.  The new model – M11 PRO, which made its on-ice debut at the NHL Winter Classic Alumni Games on Dec. 31st as Messier – along with 11 other former New York Rangers and three ex-Philadelphia Flyers – wore the new helmet during the outdoor game.  In April, the helmet will officially hit hockey specialty stores and sporting goods shelves across the U.S. and Canada.  Today, more than 650 hockey teams and associations across North America — including all 26 teams in the National American Hockey League (NAHL) — wear and trust the M11. These players and teams are part of The Messier Project community, sharing a passion for the sport of hockey and a commitment to making head protection a top priority.

It’s equally great to hear that Cascade Sports makes all of its products in the United States.  The M11 PRO helmet features its Seven Technology, a revolutionary impact attenuation liner system designed to more effectively manage energy transfer from direct impact. On impact, Seven Technology compresses to laterally displace energy and within seconds, it completely resets to ready for the next impact.  Helmets are high tech gear, and just like your sticks and skates, proper care is essential for maximum performance – and when it comes to helmets, protection is performance.

The Messier Project’s “Get Tuned” campaign is to address the issue of head injuries and concussion, which has become an epidemic in hockey, through public awareness, product development, and equipment education aimed at players, coaches and parents.  A player advocate and lifelong leader in the game of hockey, Messier took an active role in the design and development of the M11 and M11 PRO and is leading the charge to make head protection a top priority in the sport and to promote safe play.  It’s rapid growth over the past two years is a testament to the fact that priorities in hockey are finally starting to change.  The Messier Project continues to enlist the hockey community in an important quest to change priorities in the sport – from the professional level to youth hockey.

For more information on The Messier Project, the M11 PRO, the M11 and the “Get Tuned” campaign, visit