Objective To assess the use of half and three-quarter visors among National Hockey League (NHL) players and investigate the relationship between skill level and on-ice statistics such as points, penalty minutes and ice time and visor use.
Design All players who played at least one game during the 2014–2015 NHL season were included in the study. Visor usage including three-quarter visor use was determined using official in-game images and video. Player information and statistics were obtained from a statistical hockey database. A multiple logistic regression model was used to study how the different player statistics influenced the probability of a player wearing a visor.
Results Visor use was 87.1% among all NHL players (N=881) and 81.7% among all non-rookie players (N=612). Players who wore a visor were on average younger, played more games during the season, had more points, goals, assists and received more playing time. Players who did not wear a visor had 3 times more penalty minutes for every 100 min played. Only 11 (1.2%) players wore a three-quarter visor and these players were much older and contributed more to their team's offence when compared with the players who wore a one-half visor.
Conclusions Visor usage in the NHL continues to increase independent of new legislation making it mandatory for rookie players to wear a visor. Based on the results and the logistic regression model built in the study, those players who have the highest risk for not wearing a visor can be identified to help establish targeted interventions.
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Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.