Thread: Equipment: Recommend some shoulder pads!
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04-17-2013, 03:30 PM
  #27
McDugan
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 147
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Shoulder pads are funny because for most rec players, shoulder protection is the lowest priority. Most of us are much more concerned about taking a puck to the sternum, getting accidentally speared in the belly, or falling hard on our back than about hurting our shoulders in a no-check low-contact, low-level league.

I find the affordable stuff to generally be not protective enough of the lower torso (a la Sherwood) or to be generally uncomfortable in some way (restrictive, heat-trapping, clunky, heavy, etc.).

The top-end stuff may fare better in that dept. but it's just too damn expensive. The Farrell stuff looked promising to me, but they went belly-up, and besides I still wanted a protection a little lower to the belly and lumbar areas. I checked out padded roller hockey shirts, but they definitely fell into the "too hot" category -for me at least. I heat up easily, I didn't even like wearing Sherwood 9950's, although I think I should have worn XL instead of L.

So I made this. Well, designed it and ultimately had a professional stitch the pads on

In its fully finished form, it consists of:
One Nike FitDry shirt that I bought for $4 at a thrift shop
The pads cut out of a few pairs of Farrell shorts (there is a seller liquidating them for super-cheap on Amazon). Shorts were $8 apiece.

This picture shows them half-done (shoulder, upper back and chest only are attached, using padding from two sets of shorts). I tried it out using fabric glue, which worked OK and held for a while, but after a few skates I could tell they were going to start coming off. So I cut out the pads from the third pair of shorts, marked places for them on the shirt, and took the whole kit in to be stitched properly. The result (I'll try to post a pic of the finished product soon) is ugly, but very protective (I added pads around the lower lumbar and kidney/side areas as well as the belly) and very comfortable. It breathes really well since all the foam padding is well ventilated and the shirt wicks moisture, and although it's not terribly light, the way it sits on the body makes up for that. I don't think I'll ever wear regular shoulder pads again.


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