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How do I choose football shoulder pads?


Choosing football shoulder pads is an important decision for any player as they provide crucial protection on the field. Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you make an informed choice.


How do I choose football shoulder pads


1. Understand the Types:


Skill Position Pads: These are lightweight and offer greater mobility. They are suitable for players in positions like quarterback, wide receiver, and defensive back.


Linemen Pads: Designed for players in the trenches, they provide more substantial protection due to the physical nature of their positions.


2. Consider Your Position:


Assess the demands of your position. If you need agility and speed, opt for lighter pads. If you require more protection and impact absorption, choose heavier, bulkier pads.


3. Sizing:


Shoulder pads come in various sizes, typically ranging from extra small to extra-large. Proper fit is crucial for comfort and safety. Measure your shoulder width and torso length to find the right size according to the manufacturer’s guidelines.


4. Protection Level:


Look for pads that offer adequate protection. The pads should cover your shoulders, upper chest, and back without restricting movement. They should also have shock-absorbing padding to reduce the impact of collisions.


5. Material and Construction:


High-quality pads often have a hard plastic shell combined with foam padding. This combination provides both protection and flexibility. Some pads also incorporate breathable materials to enhance comfort during gameplay.


6. Adjustability and Comfort:


Check for pads with adjustable straps and attachments. This allows for a more customized fit, ensuring comfort while providing the necessary protection. Comfort is vital as you’ll be wearing these pads for extended periods during games and practices.


7. Try Before Buying:


Whenever possible, try different pads to assess their fit and comfort. Walk around, move your arms, and simulate football motions to ensure they don’t restrict your movements.


8. Budget Consideration:


Higher-end shoulder pads might offer more features and better materials, but they can be expensive. However, investing in quality pads can be worthwhile for both performance and safety reasons.


9. Consult with Coaches or Experienced Players:


Seek advice from experienced players or coaches. They might offer valuable insights based on their experience and knowledge of the game.


10. Maintenance and Durability:


Consider the durability of the pads. Ensure they are easy to clean and maintain, as football gear can get dirty and sweaty after use.


Remember, the right shoulder pads should strike a balance between protection, comfort, and mobility. Prioritize safety over aesthetics or other factors. By considering these aspects and trying out different options, you can find shoulder pads that suit your needs and enhance your performance on the football field.