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02-19-2013, 01:07 PM
  #35
tarheelhockey
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You can go without shoulder pads in non-checking rec hockey, but only if you're pretty sure nobody's going to be lifting the puck when they shoot.

Otherwise, yes, your pads are absolutely necessary. Not only do they keep you safe from the inevitable beating your body WILL take (just wait, it will happen) but they also enable you to play without fear of injuring yourself. That's pretty important when it comes time to block a shot, go hard into a corner or generally put yourself in a dangerous position. If you have to worry about shattered knees and elbows, you won't be able to do those things and your teammates will not appreciate it very much.

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