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03-26-2005, 05:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Xoltaric
lol... see, I'd be stupid enough to try this. I remember the first time I actually caught the ball in my bare "glove hand." Everyone's jaw dropped. Went on to do it two more times that game but my hand killed for a week.

Seriously though, thanks a lot everyone!

This is exactly the kind of info I'm looking for.

Here's a stupid question.. when talking about pads, what exactly is the 32" measuring? Is that the length of the pad or the length of the leg the pad is fitted for? If it is the pad, how do I know what size to get?

Last question of the day... wearing all this equipment, I'm sure I'll notice a huge difference in my mobility.. will it take one or two outings to get used to it or will I have to learn everything all over again?

I don't know how serious he was being, but there is some truth to what he's saying. When you're playing with a ball, the necessity for equipment is much lower. You can get away with playing with the bare minimums, it's just painful and less effective. I used to play with a glove, blocker, leg pads and a plastic jason style mask. It's really all one needs to be pretty effective. And if you play more of a stand up style, you don't even need the leg pads to be effective.

Basically, what you need depends on style, and breaks down like this:

Mask: makes you more fearless in net, minimizes flinching and blinking. Also, you won't fear using your face to stop a shot. Also prevents eye injuries, which are a serious concern. I got my plastic old school style one for $5 used.

Stick: You can use just a regular hockey stick, but goalie sticks are really useful. They take up a lot more space in net and cover your five hole effectively both when you're in standup or in butterfly, and the way they're shaped make it easier to adjust your hand from halfway down the stick to up by the knob. If you are going to use a regular stick, use one that shoots the opposite of the hand you hold it in. That is, if you're right handed, it's better to use a stick that shoots left.

Blocker: basically just makes you right hand bigger. I've also seen people just wear big gloves. Street ones are pretty cheap though, I got mine for around $30 new.

Glove: Hurts to catch without one, you have a better chance of catching with one on, and you can cover the ball easier. Nothing wrong with using a baseball glove if you have one lying around. Otherwise, my street one cost around $35 new.

Leg pads: Only really essential if you like to drop down into the butterfly. But then again, that's pretty essential to most goalies. The size is the length of the pad. You can go just a couple inches above your knee and be fine, but bigger ones will cover your five hole better when you drop down into butterfly. Depends on if you want to be more agile or take up more net. Quality doesn't really matter here at all, just get something cheap and light. Mine were $80 new and I've yet to feel a single ball that hit me in the pad.

Cup: You'll want one. It really hurts without one. Trust me, I know.

Chest protector: Probably the most optional piece of equipment. It makes your chest bigger which is a huge advantage, especially when you're skinny like me. I used to play without one, but I'm so skinny it put me at a huge disadvantage. You can get away without it if you're big enough, but look forward to some ball size bruises. Although, taking a hard enough shot to the stomach can knock the wind out of you, which would likely lead to giving up a goal, depending on how competitive/friendly your league is. Having your arms protected too isn't very essential at all, but it does make your arms a bit bigger so that's up to you. I've never actually bought one, so I can't tell you on price, I didn't start using one until the league I play in now, but I only ever play goal anymore when our usual goalie can't make it, so I just borrow theirs.

Everything else is pretty non-essential. In my beer league, there are some people who play with full gear, but it's mostly just so shots don't sting when they hit you. Odds of any serious injury are awfully slim if you have on a cup and mask. Outside of those two pieces, I only ever use gear that helps me stop shots and that depends on your style. But this should help you figure out what you'll want for how you play, and what you can get away with skipping over. Also, eBay is a great place as mentioned earlier. I know some goalies that got dirt cheap prices on there. But for any pads you buy, make sure you're buying stuff designed for street, because ice hockey goalie gear is way too expensive for what you'll be using it for.

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