Buying Hockey Gear is Too Hard

I’m looking to upgrade my hockey pants and I’m having a hell of a time figuring out what to buy.

For starters, there are tons of brands and I don’t know which the best one is: Easton, Bauer, CCM, Reebok, Mission, Graf, Warrior, iTech, Tackla, Shock Doctor, etc.

Even if I did know which brand was the best almost all the brands have confusing product lines. Take Easton, for hockey pants they have three lines, Synergy, Stealth and Motion. Or take Bauer, they have Superior and Vapor each of which has sub lines. At least Reebok just has one line and has a simple numbering system. But I still have no clue which number fits my level of play. Am I a 5k, 6k, 7k, or 8k level of player?

Unfortunately none of the hockey brands make it simple to know which of their lines or models you should pick. And none of the online hockey stores make it simple to know either.

All this could be mitigated by a hockey store that would let you look at all the pants and rank them based on best selling or reviews. But neither of the two top stores, Hockey Monkey or Hockey Giant do this. Both stores assume you know which brand and model you want to buy. If you do, they’re good sites. If not, you’re lost.

Normally I’d just go to a local shop but while hockey is somewhat big in Seattle our hockey stores/pro shops are small and don’t carry much so there isn’t much selection.

So frustrating. And this isn’t limited to hockey pants. Hockey sticks and every other piece of equipment is just as confusing.


@HectorGDiaz says “Tackla pants in my opinion are the best. Warrior brand is inspiring & popular.”

@tamcdonald says “From my hockey mom fiancé, Bauer is the best. Hope that helps!”

@chrisglew says “Here are the pants, CCM Vector V06 Senior Ice Hockey Pants. Get something on sale without too much padding. Stay away from pairs like this, Bauer Supreme ONE95 Senior Hockey Pants.”

@nofriday says “Go to Cyclone Taylor in Vancouver. Great selection and staff.”

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One Response to Buying Hockey Gear is Too Hard

  1. Dan Woolley says:

    Always go CCM for pants (my opinion). If you can narrow it down to a couple models, the big on-line shops tend to have very good return policies. Last time I bought gloves, it took three shipments before I was happy.

    Here’s a tip if you need to try stuff on – next time you have a flight into Orange County, CA (John Wayne), several of the big on-line shops have stores close by. You can visit a couple in an hour and then have products shipped home. Not sure how that area became a hub for big shops.

    Agree that all the on-line shops are not much more than web versions of a paper catalog. I’m still waiting for to debut…

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