Have you ever noticed when the hockey season really starts? It is when your young ‘Gretzky’ says ’ hey dad I need new hockey pants for this coming season!’ After trying on last year’s pair which he can hardly get over his over grown hips now and when he does he is ‘mummified’ and can’t move two feet in front of him! Well dad time to go to your local sports store and look around to see what is good for junior this year.
But before you do that I would suggest reading a few articles on new equipment out in the market and checking the major companies web sites. Doing a little research before going out and spending the banks money will be the best thing you can do.
Doing some research of my own I found that the best helmet out in the market right now is the new ‘Cascade M11 Helmet’. This coming from Mark Messier’s group and at a time when everyone is concerned about head injuries (check my article on ‘Time for a Head Check’ 7/16). It has a unique liner system that compresses laterally to displace impact force, then resets itself in order to absorb the effects of multiple collisions.
The other helmet that seemed to be very well built for these head injuries is the ‘REEBOK 11K Helmet’. The claim from Reebok is this helmet protects against big hits, as well as routine, frequent impacts that can lead to head injuries over a period of time. It has a carbon fibre in a restyled, low profile aerodynamic shell. It has a floating liner inside made up of EPP and comfort foams snugly around the head without creating pressure points.
Now to the pants. Bauer in my opinion usually puts out the best pant in the hockey market, just ask the pros. The ‘Bauer TotalOne Pants’ is the most highly used pant in the professional ranks. They use a F-One Shell technology, which means high density foam sandwiched between polyethylene. This makes them more energy-absorbing but 120 grams lighter then Bauer’s previous elite model. They have also added adjustable kidney and spine pads. Also neatly placed are gussets and zippers which allows players to personalize the fit and maximize strides with no motion restriction.
The last equipment gear I would check out is the ‘Reebok Kinetic Fit System’. The 11K KFS line is Reebok’s latest high-end underprotective series. This is really cool, check it out. Reebok Zig Technology fibres that they say absorb wavelengths of energy and transmit them back to the body. The shoulder pads have segmentation at the torso and spine, while hinges at the clavicle and shoulder blades allow the pad to move better with the players movements. I told you it was cool!
Unbelieveable wouldn’t you say! and there is so much more I could go on forever telling you about the new gloves from Reebok or CCM’s new Crazy Light Gloves or the new stick from Reebok called 11K Sickick and geez I haven’t touched on the new goaltending equipment that is coming in.
So like I suggested earlier on I would do some research before you go out shopping for new equipment and remember that ‘little Johnny’ doesn’t have to have all the new stuff out there but he does need the best protection that will fit him and protect him for another great new season!
By Warren Nye, UltimateHockeySource.com
Photo by Rose Lincoln / Harvard Staff Photographer
August 13th, 2011