Inline and roller hockey is a fast-paced and exciting alternative to ice hockey, played on various surfaces such as concrete, wood, or sport court tiles. To fully enjoy the game and stay protected, having the proper equipment is essential. Here are the key pieces of inline and roller hockey equipment:
1. Skates: Inline or roller hockey skates are designed specifically for the sport, featuring wheels and a chassis suitable for the playing surface. Skates should provide a comfortable fit, excellent support, and maneuverability. High-quality bearings and wheels are crucial for optimal performance and speed on the rink.
2. Helmet: A certified helmet is crucial for protecting your head from potential impacts during play. Look for helmets that meet or exceed safety standards, such as those set by the Hockey Equipment Certification Council (HECC) or the Canadian Standards Association (CSA). Helmets should fit securely and comfortably, with a cage or shield to protect your face.
3. Gloves: Inline and roller hockey gloves protect your hands from impacts, slashes, and falls. Gloves should offer ample protection, flexibility, and a comfortable fit, allowing for a good grip on your stick and optimal dexterity during play.
4. Shin Guards: Shin guards provide crucial protection for your lower legs, covering the shin and knee. Inline and roller hockey shin guards should fit securely and comfortably, offering ample padding and a hard shell to shield against impacts and falls.
5. Elbow Pads: Elbow pads protect your elbow joints and the surrounding area from potential injuries. Look for pads that offer a secure fit, with straps or sleeves to hold them in place during play. Pads should allow for a full range of motion and provide adequate protection against impacts and falls.
6. Girdle or Pants: A girdle or padded pants provide protection for your hips, tailbone, and thighs. Inline and roller hockey girdles or pants should be lightweight, breathable, and offer ample padding in critical areas. They should fit comfortably and securely, without restricting movement.
7. Shoulder Pads: Although not always required in inline and roller hockey, shoulder pads can provide additional protection for your upper body, especially during more competitive play. Look for pads that offer adequate coverage and protection, while allowing for a full range of motion.
8. Stick: An inline or roller hockey stick is designed for the specific demands of the sport, with a blade suitable for the playing surface. Sticks can be made of wood, composite, or aluminum and should be chosen based on your preferences, skill level, and playing style.
9. Protective Cup and Jock or Jill: A protective cup (jock for males, jill for females) is essential for safeguarding the groin area. Choose a cup that offers a secure and comfortable fit, with straps or a garter system to hold it in place during play.
10. Inline and Roller Hockey Accessories: Items such as bearings, wheels, and tools for skate maintenance, as well as extra stick tape, pucks, and balls, are useful to have on hand for optimal performance and enjoyment of the game.
In summary, inline and roller hockey equipment is essential for optimal performance, safety, and enjoyment of the sport. By investing in the right gear, players can focus on honing their skills, improving their game, and having fun on the rink.