Recently, a charging forward's skate ended up cutting an artery in the opposing goalie's leg. The goalie was taken directly from the ice to the hospital. This same goaltender was seriously injured a few years back, tearing his meniscus (knee injury) while attempting a save. Goalies too often sustain painful, and sometimes career-ending, injuries from poor protection.
Smaller injuries like bruises and cuts can happen with a hard slap shot if you are not protected.
New equipment designs allow you to extend side padding through the use of layered strips. Don't hesitate to add extra padding. A good trick is to apply thick one-sided sticky tape (Gorilla brand works well) on areas with little or no padding. Be preventive. To help keep yourself injury-free, customize your hockey equipment with these tips:
- Extend back padding with layered strips of tape Essentially, you want these extensions to create a wrap-around effect.
- Remember the toe strap. In the long list of goalie gear, an often forgotten piece is the toe strap. If you have any malfunctions, you're potentially headed for a trip on the ice instead of a save. Always check straps and/or laces
- Reinforce wear points. Routine damage from puck stops leads to wear and tear, so make sure to fix these up when need be.
The goalie is arguably the most dangerous position in one of the greatest of sports. As a goaltender, your team's success depends on you, so follow the above points to pad it—or, as my old Canadian instructor used to say, "It's gonna hurt!"
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