It can be super overwhelming when you buy your very first hockey glove. There are numerous choices of models, shapes, and sizes out there, which makes it hard to decide. So in today’s discussion, we’re going to help you choose the best hockey glove for your hockey game.
To break it down for you, we’ve categorized hockey gloves into three different levels: recreational, performance, and elite. Puck Drawn Hockey will also introduce three different fit options: traditional, tapered, and contoured, so now, let’s go deeper into each type of glove.
3 Levels of Hockey Glove
If you’re brand-new in the squad, participating in a friendly league, or if you’re a casual player in the outdoor rink, then you should look at the recreational level. You will have single density foams in the entire structure at this level, which offers excellent protection against any rucksack or stick in contact with your palm.
The thumb is usually a one-piece material that helps to prevent hyper-extension as you fall to the ground. On the outside of the glove, you can see screen printed images or symbols along with a lightweight nylon framework for visual purposes. These allow your hand to breathe and make you feel comfortable during the game.
The palm is a conventional Nash material with a thin layer of leather that provides the traditional sensation along with excellent wear and tear resistance. Brushed microfiber is used for the liner, which is going to free your hand from sweat and moisture.
Read more: The best hockey goals for home training
The next level we are going to look at is the performance level glove. You should go for this level if you’re somehow competitive, or have got into that physical league with those beer leaguers and a higher division. TThis level works best if you wish to have the perfect balance between protection, comfort, and versatility in a reasonable price range.
Your protection is going to be mainly consistent with dual-density foams. There are two separate thicknesses: thinner, firmer foam versus softer, weaker foam, which help balance the protection specifications.
For some of the main areas that often get hit during the game, there is improved safety powered by plastic insert reinforcements. These areas include the fingers in the backhand, two slashes, block shots, and the thumb. Most of the time, you can see a two-piece thumb that helps with your stick’s handle. This structure also prevents over-extended when the player falls.
On the outside, the nylon framework is upgraded, so perhaps you may have some artificial leather hits, which provide better durability to your glove. The performance level also has additional visual resources with the logo patches.
For the palm, you’re going to see a higher grade Nash material along with better overlays at the center and on the thumb downwards. Such overlays significantly boost wear and tear performance. This also creates an exquisite feel with your stick.
For your liner, the microfiber is much softer, which is excellent for managing sweat and moisture. You can also see some odor-friendly innovations from the manufacturer at this level. As you’ll see, high techs from the price point of the elite level are often duped into the performance level.
And next, if you need the best protection, mobility, durability, and comfort on the market, obviously go for the elite level gloves. These gloves are designed for highly competitive players, so it’s the most effective protection you can get. The manufacturers equips these gloves with the best quality foam protection. For example, CCM got D3O, and Bauer got Poron XRD for their elite level gloves.
You will also have plastic reinforcements in your fingertips, hands, and all other central areas. Super-rich visual graphics are also available with delicate sticking and synthetics that, again, contribute to the exterior ‘s durability. These gloves have the higher grade synthetic or more upper-grade nylon exterior as well.
Turning to the palm, you’re going to have a very pro preferred palm which NHL players like to use. In the center as well as in the thumb area, the elite gloves have consistently superimposed, very high-quality pro-cleaner, chlorine, or nash material. There are also some grip prints to help with gripping the stick and stretched finger gussets that help with your mobility and dexterity. Eventually, the entire exterior embraces the broken feeling of the gloves.
The liner on elite level gloves is the manufacturer’s premium microfiber. This premium microfiber is super soft, super comfortable, and does an excellent job of wicking sweat and moisture away. Such gloves also provide antimicrobial treatment that helps to reduce excessive odor bacteria. The gloves will remain much fresher for a long time.
3 Fit Styles
So we’ve narrowed down the three different levels of the glove, and you’ve found what’s going to best suit you, now it’s time to decide what kind of fit profile you want. There are three different options as well: traditional, tapered and contoured.
The first one is going to be a traditional style fit with a classic four-bar design on the backhand and throughout the glove. With this fit, you will have volume in the fingers, the backhand and the wrist, so you’re going to feel some space in there. It’s going to be boxy, so your hand can move a little bit, which facilitates excellent wrist mobility.
Your second option is going to be a contoured fit. It’ll be close to the body when you place your hand in such gloves. They are tight over the fingertips, the back of your hand, and the cuff, giving you a warm stick feeling. The gloves are going to move simultaneously with your hand while you are playing to reduce the negative space. It’ll be much closer to your side, as mentioned.
Bridging the gap between the two fit styles above is the tapered style fit. You would have the same fit feeling as the contoured fit at the finger and backhand areas when you put your hand in. The cuff flares out and allows the cuff to be active, much like the traditional glove. That’s how the tapered fit gives you the feel and the versatility between the traditional fit and contoured fit.
Read more: Best goalie throat guards to purchase 2020
It can’t be denied that the hockey glove is a critical component of the whole hockey equipment kit. They do not only cover your hands, but also give your stick a responsive, supportive and strong grip. Puck Drawn Hockey hopes that the tips shared above helped you to be less overwhelming with the numerous possible choices on the market, and be able to pick out the best hockey gloves to support your performance and defense.