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Whether you play hockey for the NHL or in a local league, you need the right protective gear, and that means the best hockey elbow pads. As someone who has fractured their elbow by falling on the ice during a game, I can’t stress enough how important proper protection is. Safety gear is the most important investment you can make when playing an intense contact sport like hockey. Check out our hockey elbow pad reviews and ratings below.
When people think about safety gear for hockey, they typically think about hockey shoulder pads, hockey helmets, or hockey neck guards. However, your elbows are vulnerable, and they need special protection, whether you play as a goalie or a forward in the rink. Check out the top five best hockey elbow pads below.
In This Article
The STX Ice Hockey Stallion HPR 1.2 Hockey Elbow Pads are the best hockey elbow pads because they use Velcro 360+ straps to completely encircle your arm and give you a custom fit.
The STX Ice Hockey Stallion HPR 1.2 Elbow Pad is made for juniors and seniors. For seniors, there are three available sizes: small, medium, and large. Senior hockey elbow pads are recommended for people over 14 years old. The junior option comes in two sizes and is intended for kids ages 8-14.
This is a two-piece pad: one integrated piece covers the forearm and the elbow, and a smaller attached pad covers the upper arm. These elbow pads use Velcro straps that wrap around the entire arm to hold them securely in place. This pad design is suitable for entry-level or recreational players.
- Velcro 360+ strap wraps around the entire arm for security
- Durable stitching ensures the pads won’t fall apart easily
- Padding provides extra comfort
- May be too stiff for some people
The STX Ice Hockey Stallion HPR Hockey Elbow Pads are the best hockey elbow pads because they use a unique three-piece design that improves flexibility and uses water-resistant foam padding.
The STX Ice Hockey Stallion HPR Elbow Pads are the top-of-the-line for STX elbow pads. This model has many features that make it one of the best hockey elbow pads on the market. These inline elbow pads are pro-level equipment. They provide extra protection with additional foam padding that is used to cover high-impact zones. The foam is specially treated to repel water and sweat so that the elbow pads stay dry throughout the game.
This elbow pad has a three-piece design for more flexibility, and there is also a slash guard on the forearm that protects the wrist area. The slash guard is removable for those who don’t want to use one. It comes with a full-length comfort sleeve with grip printing on it to hold it in place. You can wear this sleeve underneath the pads to reduce possible abrasion friction on the arms.
- Three-piece construction for improved range of motion
- Water-resistant foam padding for higher level of protection
- Comfortable to wear
- Only sized for people up to 6’1″
The JAMM 1001 Soft Hockey Elbow Pads for Youths are the best hockey elbow pads because they’re an inexpensive option that is great for kids who just want to try the sport but aren’t sure if they want to continue.
The JAMM 1001 Soft Elbow Pads are a one-piece design that only comes in small, medium, or large for juniors. These elbow pads are an affordable choice for parents of kids who want to try playing hockey. They provide all the necessary protection that a good pair of elbow pads provides without breaking the bank.
These elbow pads use a plastic cup and foam padding to protect the elbow. The soft pad extends only a short way down the forearm. There is a Velcro strapping system to hold the pad securely in place. The foam is dual-density and breathable to provide more comfort.
- Plastic cup design provides extra protection
- Segmented design promotes better flexibility
- No adult sizes
The JAMM 5001 Hocky Elbow Pads for Adults are the best hockey elbow pads because they’re made with quick-dry material that keeps you cool and dry during the big game.
The JAMM 5001 Elbow Pads are made for seniors and comes in four sizes of small, medium, large, and extra-large. These elbow pads have dual-density foam covering plastic elbow caps. Included poly inserts offer more protection for biceps and forearms.
The ice hockey elbow pads are made with quick-dry fabric to prevent them from holding sweat against the body, preventing chafing or rashes. The segmented design allows for free movement to make it easier to maneuver your arms. There are three Velcro straps to provide a secure fit.
- Made with quick-dry fabric
- Velcro strips provide a comfortable fit
- No junior hockey elbow pads available
The WRSI S-Turn Hockey Elbow Pads with Neoprene Foam Padding are the best hockey elbow pads because they use a silicone-coated mesh to adhere to your arm while allowing the guard to breathe.
The WRSI S-Turn Elbow Pads have the unique design of having ABS armor panels to protect the elbow and forearm. They come in two sizes of small/medium and large/extra-large. The foam padding is three-millimeter thick neoprene. The included adjustable straps are elastic with a hook and loop design, and there are three straps for each pad. The sleeve is made from a gripping mesh that has uses silicone to lock them in place while allowing air in and sweat out.
These elbow pads have a design that is for making S-turns while whitewater rafting, canoeing, or kayaking to avoid injuries when hitting the rocks. They glide across anything without catching on it, and they work equally well for ice hockey. The pair of elbow pads weighs only ten ounces.
- Hard-shell ABS plastic guards are extremely tough
- Can be used for hockey or other sports
- Lightweight at just five ounces each
- Only two sizes
Features to Consider for the Best Hockey Elbow Pad
Now that you’ve read through the hockey elbow pad reviews, you can think about which features you want in a pair of elbow pads. Here are some of the most important things to consider.
The size is important for two reasons. First, if your safety equipment doesn’t fit properly, it won’t give you enough protection when you need it. Second, gear that doesn’t fit you properly is uncomfortable to wear. It becomes a distraction, which may cause reduced playing skills and/or an increased chance of having a fall.
The padding must be thick enough to work properly. Consider the use of plastic either inside as a cup that is covered with two layers of soft foam padding or is used on the outside as hard-shell protection.
Look for a design that covers more of the arm and that has added protection for the high-impact areas including the biceps of the upper arm and down the forearm to just above the wrist. The idea is to cover everything and leave little exposed that can be injured.
The straps need to hold the elbow pads securely in place without cutting off circulation, restricting movement too much, or causing abrasion when playing while wearing the pads. Most elbow pads have two or three straps to keep them in place, and which one you choose depends purely on preference.
The best hockey elbow pads protect without restricting movement. In general, a three-piece design is more flexible than a one- or two-piece design. Flexibility also depends on having the proper fit. Wearing elbow pads that are too small may restrict movement, and when kids who play hockey get older, they will need to get a larger size for elbow pads as they get bigger.
The main consideration for the material is its ability to dry quickly and stay drier by being treated to absorb less water or sweat. You will also want to check the quality of the sewing of seams. Strong seams help the equipment hold together for long useful life.
Benefits of Using Hockey Elbow Pads
All you have to do is fall one time on the ice and hit your elbow when you are not wearing any pads and you will never want to go on the ice again without elbow pads. If you think that sounds like a personal anecdote, it is. Even if you don’t fracture or break your elbow, the pain of hitting that area of the body is extreme.
When you wear the properly-fitted equipment for protection, including your choice of the best hockey elbow pads, it makes you feel invincible. With your armor on, you will be unstoppable. For youth, who are just starting to learn how to play, elbow pads are vitally important. A young hockey player who falls and gets seriously hurt may be turned off the game for the rest of their life. That problem is avoidable if they wear the correctly-sized protection equipment including the best hockey elbow pads available for them.
Elbow pads are thin and don’t take up very much space, so you can toss them into your hockey equipment bag with your hockey skates, shin guards, and other hockey gear without any issue. Just make sure they don’t get lost in there—you don’t want to realize you only have one pad right before a game.
Precautions of Using Hockey Elbow Pads
Hockey is exciting because it is one of the fastest sports. You will be flying down the ice to collide with large players at speeds of around 20 miles per hour each, which equals a combined speed of 40 miles per hour, the puck will be flying at a speed of up to 100 miles per hour, your equipment is the only thing protecting you. The best hockey elbow pads protect more than just elbows because they also cover part of your arm.
When you put on your elbow pads, you need to make sure that they are secured and fit properly. If either of these things isn’t correct, it can affect how well-protected you are and cause the pads to get in your way instead of help you. Also, remember to use them in tandem with your other safety equipment like hockey gloves.
My choice for the best hockey elbow pads are the STX Ice Hockey Stallion HPR 1.2 Hockey Elbow Pads. These pads are made from quality materials, have durable construction, and are good value for the price. I am partial to products made by STX and have many items that are made by this company, including one of my favorite hockey sticks. Having the forearm and elbow protection as one piece gives me the support I need to keep my arms properly positioned when playing. It is a gentle reminder to keep my arms up and ready for taking a shot.
I hope these hockey elbow pad reviews have been helpful!