NOCSAE, the organization that certifies sports equipment to protect athletes, announced several years ago that they would require shoulder pad manufacturers to better protect athletes from commotio cordis, or hard impacts to the heart that can cause death. The condition isn't common, but protecting athletes from it is very important nonetheless.
The deadline to sell and use the new NOCSAE ND200 shoulder pads was January 1, 2022. This means that if you have not purchased NEW shoulder pads over the last several months, your shoulder pads are no longer allowed to be used for lacrosse.
Please see this page for details on how to tell if your shoulder pads are certified and for a list of models that have passed certification.
All boys lacrosse players Grades 1-8 MUST have the new certified shoulder pads in able to participate this year (and beyond).