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Choosing leg pads can be a time consuming affair. The first, and most important issue to consider is sizing. Check out this blog with detailed information about goalie leg pad sizing! Also, keep in mind that new goaltenders may feel awkward even when the leg pads fit correctly. In part this is due to having unfamiliar and bulky objects strapped to your legs that rotate and flop around a bit.
The most important sizing concern is making sure the knee is fit into the knee cradle, and the knee lands on the landing pad. If you are unsure of what the landing pad or knee cradle are, please check here to learn the anatomy of a leg pad. Another consideration is the boot channel. Even though there is no exact sizing length for the boot channel, it is still important to make sure that it fits onto the skate, and isn’t too long or short. Most companies have different boot channel lengths.
After finding the correct fit, most goaltenders should consider the thigh rise. Picking a thigh rise length will be different depending on the goaltenders preference and how flexible the goaltender’s Butterfly is.
The next issue to consider when selecting leg pads is the flexibility of the pad. Goaltenders who are looking for more flexible pads should look for pads that include knee rolls and multiple breaks. Knee rolls soften the core of the pad, which helps goaltenders close their five hole in the Butterfly position. Additionally, outer breaks allow the pads to bend and flex with more ease than pads without breaks. Flexible pads are also constructed with soft foams, which deaden puck impact. This keeps rebounds close to the goaltender, providing a better opportunity to smother the puck.
For goalies looking for stiffer pads that hold the square shape better, flat facing pads and pads with no breaks are the way to go. Flat face are stiffer, and hold the Butterfly shape better than pads with knee rolls. The pads are further stiffened when combined with no breaks. Stiffer pads kick rebounds away from the net, giving the goaltender more time to recover. This is useful if the goaltender is playing more of a blocking style.
For more information on what style best fits you, click here.