Shin Protection

Everything You Want to Know About Shin Protection

If you participate in sports that are a little more intense than a round of golf or bowling with your buddies, chances are you can probably benefit from shin protection.  While you may simply associate shin pads with soccer, they are also worn by hockey players, snowboarders and motocross participants. They are designed to protect your tibia, which is largely exposed along the front of your lower leg.  This is an area that lacks very little cushioning and is very vulnerable to injury and even fracture with minimal impact.

What is Shin Protection?

Shin pads are pieces of protective equipment that are worn directly in front of the shins.  Today, they are made out of a few different types of material, such as:

Properly fitting shin guards will cover the full length of your ankle from your knee down to your ankle, minus one to two inches.  While they should provide maximum shin protection, they must not hinder the athlete's performance.

Putting on Soccer Shin Guards

If you can put on soccer shin guards, you can successfully put on any type, for any sport.  They may not be the most comfortable accessory to wear at first, and they can easily become pretty smelly, but they are necessary and you will get used to them.

Selecting the Right Shin Guards

Most quality athletic stores are equipped with a staff that is knowledgeable to help you choose the protection that best suit your needs. When trying on the shin guards, you should be able to move your foot and bend your knee freely without any interference.  Fiberglass guards are recommended for more sports because they provide exceptional protection.

If you are purchasing shin protection for a young player, they will usually begin by wearing a one-piece guard with an attached ankle guard to also protect their achilles tendon from any direct kicks.  Older players usually prefer a two-piece guard or one that will fit in a compression sleeve for more flexibility.

Regardless of what sport you play, you are better off wearing shin guards than sitting on the sidelines at the game or up in the chalet at the ski resort talking about how bad your shins are.  It doesn't make you any more brave or any better of an athlete to go without protection.