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Goalie Gear
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Goalies wear expensive, specialized equipment for their unique role on the ice. Before you can try playing the position, you need the gear. But you may invest in the gear and find that the position is not suited to you. This is a big dilemma. As a result, any prospective goalie should start with borrowed or used equipment.

Key aspects of goalie gear include:

  • Skates are encased in an outer steel shell to protect the feet when stopping the puck. The blades are flat, not rockered. There is no open space between the sole of the boot and the blade through which a puck can fit. Don't learn to skate in these, and don't buy them unless you or your child are already playing the game and are committed to being a goalie. In many young kids' leagues, the shooting normally is not nearly hard enough to warrant the protection offered by goalies' skates.
  • Sticks are designed for blocking shots, with an extra-wide blade and a broad lower portion of the shaft.
  • Gloves: one glove is a modified first baseman's mitt for catching and holding the puck (goalies are allowed to do this, unlike other players). The other hand, which holds the stick, wears a glove with a big rectangular pad on its back for blocking pucks.
  • Chest protection, arm protection and pants are much more heavily padded than what the other players wear.
  • Headgear is either a helmet with an extra-strong wire cage covering the face, or a plastic mask with an opening in front of the eyes for a wire cage.
  • Leg pads are large and distinctive, worn outside the socks, unlike other players' shin guards, which are worn under the socks.
  • Jerseys for goalies are especially large and baggy, to accommodate all the extra torso protection.
  • A key advance in the design of hockey gear,

    especially for goalies' bulky equipment, is the use of lightweight synthetics instead of leather and other natural materials that weigh much more. This has added a lot to the speed and mobility of players.

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