Sunday, April 8, 2012

History and some remarkable findings

We think we have found some interesting and remarkable facts. As you might know we claim that the first plastic stick came from the US company Cosom. We think that the man on the picture above is Philip or Phil Carlson one of the main guys behind the Cosom plastic toy stick from Minnesota. 
In other words we think this picture might show not only Floorball history but here is one of the true inventors behind the sport?
Maybe it is time to develop a Carlson stick or a Carlson tournament too?

The following is an except from a court case - upon a damaged eye from 1985. A sad story -  still full of interesting facts. It could be that liability stories like these is what derailed the plastic Floor Hockey stick development in USA? But we do not know.
This following text is an excerpt or quote with some interesting parts cut from this source page: 

"Cosom Corporation (Cosom Corporation became a subsidiary of Thermotech Industries in 1963); ITT Corporation from May 14, 1970 (when ITT acquired the assets of Thermotech, including its Cosom operation and trade name "Cosom"), until July 26, 1976; and Kusan, Inc., after July 26, 1976, when it purchased the Cosom manufacturing division of ITT. In purchasing the assets of Thermotech, ITT agreed to assume all the liabilities of Cosom Corporation. Accordingly, ITT is responsible for any indoor hockey sticks sold by Cosom Corporation.

Cosom Safe-T-Play hockey, ........... a Cosom Corporation pamphlet describing and touting Cosom Safe-T-Play products, together with what appears to be a separate booklet bearing a Cosom Safe-T-Play logo and the word Cosom at the bottom entitled: "Hockey Official Rulebook for Indoor-Outdoor Play."
These materials were part of a marketing effort by Cosom Corporation to induce elementary schools to institute indoor floor hockey. As explained by Phillip Carlson, who had been involved in the original concept of floor hockey, Cosom Corporation started manufacturing plastic hockey equipment in 1961 at the suggestion of physical education teachers. Prior to that time, "there had been some floor hockey played, but it had been with wood sticks with some type of wrapping on them so that they didn't mar and scratch the floors. So, it became apparent that there would be a market for a -- for a plastic stick that would be lighter, safer, and it could be used on gym floors without messing up the floors."

Cosom Corporation's pamphlet, which lists the "advantages of Cosom Hockey for schools and recreation departments," states that it is a simple game that anyone can learn quickly and is readily mastered by children as young as nine or ten years of age In large letters, the game is described as "Inexpensive. No Need for Protective Equipment"; in smaller letters the brochure states, "Thousands of the Indoor Hockey Kits are in use, throughout the country, and yet no case of serious injury has been reported." Under the heading "How Cosom Hockey Grew," the pamphlet includes a copy of a letter from Thomas Harter, a Michigan director of civic recreation, originally published in Recreation Magazine in 1964. The letter enthusiastically endorses the sport of indoor hockey, sets forth the inexpensive cost and durability of the equipment -- the Cosom Safe-T-Play Kit -- and points out that the total cost of the game for a league of fifteen to twenty teams is the cost of one kit plus the cost of plastic face masks recommended for goalies.
The various products of Cosom are described at the end of the pamphlet. The kit referred to in Harter's letter, Safe-T-Play Hockey, "includes 12 regular Cosom Hockey sticks of Polyethylene, 36 and 1/2" long and 6 1/2 ounces, 3 Cosom Fun Balls and 3 pucks; 24 page instruction book."

"Another publication prepared by an organization known as the "Athletic Institute," but bearing Cosom's name, describes floor hockey as follows: "It's really ice hockey without ice. Instead of skates, the players wear sneakers or rubber soled running shoes, and, instead of an India-rubber puck you substitute a light-weight plastic disc or ball."
"The official rule book put out by Cosom states that the first indoor hockey games introduced under an organized recreation program were in Battle Creek, Michigan, and that the program "was developed and instigated by Tom Harter . . . who devised the simple rules of the game." The plaintiff repeatedly claims that the game was invented by Cosom. Passing the questions whether the game was a new creation and, if so, who was its inventor, we assume, in the plaintiff's favor, that the game, or its rules, is what was sold."

Here is another cool link on something Phil or Philip Carlson seem to have written him self and it pin-points to that Battle Creek in Michican was the first place they ever seriously played "floor Hockey with Plastic sticks",395687

Then try this page on Tom Harter - where his rules truly describe a stick with a curved blade..
Yes it is clear that Floor Hockey do recognize this man as the father of Floor Hockey - but since it is obvious that they started out with cosom sticks - well this is Floorball too - I think.

Our comments?
Wow. OK first to the main cause in this legal case as of above. Is Floorball dangerous? Research from Finland suggest that one hour of Floorball pose a risk of eye injuries at the same level as playing Tennis for 2 hours and 20 minutes.
Should one wear protective glasses? We think so and definitively among younger players - yes. Why is so few players playing with glasses? That is a mystery to us - but we know that it is mandated in some European systems for kids. So we do recommend protective eye wear, yes with no doubt.

Did we here find one of the most important individuals behind Floorball Mr. Philiph (or Phil) Carlson? Yes it sure seem like it. Do we think hes family immigrated from Sweden. Betcha.

Battle Creek, Ha. So that means right in-between Detroit and Chicago in Battle Creek they played plastic Floor Hockey for the first time probably in 1962....
Lets say that right in-between Chicago and Minneapolis (Philips hometown) - we now 50 years later celebrate the return of the plastic stick - with the Tomah Open tournament.

Deng - we must get Battle Creek to get up and play again with sticks made of carbon fiber...!

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Research suggest that eye-injuries are more common in Floorball as compared to Tennis, but less common as compared to Squash (similar to Racquetball).
To minimize this risk of injury Floorballcentral recommend: Use certified protective eye-wear (mandated in many European areas for the youth). Do not lay down on the court. Follow the rules strict on stick height.

Also if you get addicted to this sport - do not blame us!