Health & Medical Fitness & bodybuilding

Block the Hardest Hits with Football Shoulder Pads

Every football player demands excellent protective equipment to guard against serious injuries during the game. Players pack on the protection from head to toe, suiting up with shoulder pads, helmets, gloves, shoes, thigh pads, knee pads, and hip pads. Each piece of gear plays its part in protecting the player, but without the right features and fit, they may be doing more harm than good. That's why it's important to know what to look for, to find the best protective football gear possible.  One of the most important, and least understood parts of the football armor, is the shoulder pads.

The shoulder pads are designed to enhance impact absorption and protection around the shoulders and chest. Consisting of a hard plastic outer shell, with shock-absorbing foam padding underneath, shoulder pads protect the player's chest and rib area while offering freedom of movement. There are various styles of shoulder pads available for different positions. The standard parts of any football shoulder pad include a rivet, neck, cup, epaulet, main body cushion, auxiliary, and buckles. These features vary in style and size, depending on which position the shoulder pads are designed for, and which players they're designed to protect.

For a quarterback position, lightweight shoulder pads with flexible shells, cushioning, and mobility are an ideal choice. The shoulder pads for the running back or defensive back positions are crafted with no excess or heavy epaulets, and have stronger padding and cushioning. The pads designed for fullback, linebacker, or a multi-position player offer a secure fit, with a heavier, more durable feel than quarterback or running back shoulder pads. They have vinyl buckles for a secure fit and provide maximum protection against hard hits. The lineman shoulder pads are crafted for ultimate protection with ample mobility, and feature vinyl buckles or elastic straps to offer a secure fit. 

Many manufacturers sell a wide range of shoulder pads, but with each brand, the features and fit may vary. Some of the top brands are Schutt, Riddell, Douglas, Bike, and Adams. One of the latest and most advanced features in football shoulder pads is the addition of TPU cushioning. TPU is an almost indestructible cushioning material, that resists compression, never breaks down, and never grows mold or bacteria, which Schutt uses is their football helmets. Now TPU is integrated into the chest, shoulders, and back of high-end shoulder pads to absorb the maximum amount of impact force. The Z-cool technology found in Gear Pro Tech shoulder pads is also popular, and helps to keep the hot air out by letting the cool air in.

 In order to get the maximum protection, players use football shoulder pads along with the other accessories, including back plates, neck rolls, rib guards, and injury pads. With a huge variety of shoulder pad styles, designs, and sizes available out there, it's important to pick high quality shoulder pads that are built to take the hardest hits, suit your age and skill level, and fit your position for ultimate comfort and protection.

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