Hi, this is James. Today I was watching a hockey match with my daughter – who is a 13-year-old hockey player – when a question suddenly came to my mind. Is women’s roller hockey equipment any different than men’s? When I asked my daughter about it, she looked at me as if my not knowing the answer was a great sin. However, after the match, I did some research found out more about it.
Inline vs. Quad hockey
Roller hockey has two types. One is inline hockey, and the other is quad hockey. Both types use roller skates, but they are of different.
Yes, Women’s Roller Hockey Equipment IS Different
The reason why is the anatomy or body structure of women. A noteworthy dissimilarity between male and female body types is the size of the hips. Ladies, generally, have wider hips and shorter torsos than men.
As a solution to the different body shapes, roller hockey equipment suppliers have introduced women’s hockey equipment. The difference is mainly noticeable in inline roller hockey. In quad hockey equipment there is not much space for difference.
Roller hockey players usually wear shorts or ice hockey pants. Roller hockey pants for females have extra space in the hips along with shorter hip guards as well as on the top of the pants. These features are not available in men’s pants. Some female players prefer not to wear shorts.
Another basic difference between men vs. women’s roller hockey equipment relates to the chest area. This difference sometimes results in a mismatch of shoulder pads. Inline roller hockey players tend not to wear shoulder pads, although it is highly recommended for amateur players. For females, the shoulder pads have molded cups to accommodate larger chests. On the contrary, male shoulder pads have a flat front. However, many professionals nowadays use padded shirts instead.
One crucial part of the roller hockey equipment gender differences is the skates. Although female roller skates are not very popular, they do still exist. Female specialized skates are a bit narrower in shape than men’s skates and weigh a bit less too. Nevertheless, these skates are not widely popular among female hockey players. If you have a wider foot than most women, then you can switch to men’s roller skates. But remember to buy one size smaller as men’s rollers are bigger too.
Normally sticks are made of different sizes. Roller hockey sticks differ with hand size. So, players choose the stick that suits them. Hand sizes of male and female players differ, so females need to choose the size that is best for them.
Junior Unisex Equipment Lends a Hand
Many female players prefer junior roller hockey equipment rather than women’s set. This equipment is mainly made for teenagers. Being smaller in size and proportion, the junior items can help to a great extent. Junior size sticks, gloves, and roller skates are among the regular mixtures to female quad or inline hockey players. Another bonus point for using junior equipment is that these items are cost-efficient.
Gloves are often used only by the goalies in roller hockey. Typically, female players need a smaller sized glove than men. So, sometimes they try out smaller gloves, ranging from 12- to 13-inches, which are usually designed for junior-age players, function marvelously for ladies. These sizes have shorter fingers, a smaller palm, and a shorter sleeve too.
If a woman needs a 5.5 size roller skate or smaller, then she can easily step into a junior skate. In different forums, women repeatedly state that junior skates work well for them over lady’s sizes.
Not Everything is Good
A problem with women’s roller hockey equipment and juniors too is that there are not many options available. Not many renowned brands produce equipment for women. Also, companies don’t make the junior set for adult matches. So, playing while wearing junior unisex equipment increases the risks of sports injuries.
Keep on Trying
It might be tricky finding the best-fitting women’s roller hockey equipment. Even the normal male shirts or jerseys in quad hockey are uncomfortable for many women. So, the best way to find the right equipment is trial and error. Don’t compromise with even a bit of discomfort as it might result in serious injuries. So, find the best piece for you and start scoring. Good luck.
James Verner is a sports blogger. He writes articles on different types of indoor and outdoor sports activities. James always tries to bring up the recent hypes in sports and sports gears in front of his readers. He also specializes in different sports as for how you can play them, what you may require, what are the things you should do or avoid to do such things. You can follow him on his blog SportsGeeky.com.