by Source For Sports Tips for Parents
The right shoulder pads to elevate your game will allow you to move easily and be protected on the ice.
Hockey shoulder pads are a key component of the on-ice protection and well-being of hockey players. In a sport as physical as hockey, it’s important to have ample protection against various forms of contact including big hits, hard shots, and even the occasional fall.
Shoulder pads are designed to cover the majority of the torso, and include extra padded foam to protect specific areas that are at high risk for injury.
Properly fitted shoulder pads will provide protection for the following areas:
Belly and kidneys with extra foam padding
Chest, collarbone, and sternum with front chest protector and foam
Back and spine with full coverage and reinforced foam along the spine
Biceps and shoulders with injected caps with foam inserts and detachable/floating bicep guards
The shoulder pads may also be lined with hydrophobic mesh in order to keep you dry and comfortable in gameplay.
The best way to be protected on the ice however is to ensure a proper fit. Shoulder pads come in Small, Medium and Large sizes for Youth, Junior and Senior categories. These sizes are based on a measurement of the circumference of your chest below the armpits, so taking that measurement is a great place to start for a frame of reference.
Also, when trying the shoulder pads on, you want the centre of the shoulders to line up precisely with the centre of the shoulder caps. This will allow the caps to properly absorb and distribute shock from big hits, pucks, and any other sort of contact. Adjustable Velcro straps on the chest and arm areas will allow you to ensure the shoulder pads are snug and held in place each time you get ready to step onto the ice.
The best way to test out new shoulder pads is to bring your hockey pants and elbow pads with you, allowing you to see how your equipment will align for the best coverage possible. Today’s elbow pads have extended protection for the arms which will ensure there is little to no exposed arm from the elbow to the bicep guard when both pieces of equipment are on. This will avoid any sticks or pucks directly hitting your body in that area. At the front of your torso, there should only be enough space between the top of the hockey pants and bottom of the chest protector to allow for necessary mobility. A belly pad will help protect your torso from sticks, skates, and pucks while still allowing for movement when a player needs to bend while skating or playing the puck.
The right shoulder pads to elevate your game will allow you to move easily and be protected on the ice. You can find those shoulder pads with our help using the Pro-Formance Advantage Custom Fitting System at any Source For Sports hockey store. From beginner to pro, we have the right gear, at the right price for your game.