Thursday, February 10, 2011

Hockey 101 - Equipment

Both of my boys are hockey players.  For those of you that have never had a hockey player in your home, let me give you an overview of the sport.  We'll start with the equipment:

Starting at the top, is the helmet.  Complete with face cage.  The mandatory mouth guard is attached to the face cage unless the player has chewed on it enough and it is no longer attached.  In this case, the light blue at the bottom of the face cage is Kidlet Three's mouth guard.
Shoulder pads are next.  We have a wooden frame to hang the equipment on after they are sweat-soaked.  It really helps dry everything out.
Elbow pads.  I have to laugh at the brand name...Vapor.  Believe me, they do emit a vapor.
No this is not part of a Star Wars outfit.  These are hockey gloves. 
Laying the breezers, or shorts, on the floor makes them look really small.  They probably weigh 3 to 5 pounds and are very padded. 

 Shin pads.  They protect the lower leg and knee.
Hockey socks are pulled up and over the shin pads.  They are attached to the "jock" that is worn under the breezers.  You don't want your socks falling down in the game.  Hockey skates are next.
A hockey player needs a primary hockey stick and then a good back up.  Sticks can break during practice or a game so the backup stick is carried along at all times.
The blade of the stick is wrapped in tape.  Tape comes in a variety of colors but Kidlet Three tends to wrap in black or sometimes in white tape.
 And all of this equipment, minus the sticks, is packed into a hockey bag that must weigh at least 20 pounds.  Kidlet Three's bag has wheels so he can pull it.  Some kids have straps that allow them to carry the bag on their backs.
The shirts are called a "jersey".  There is a practice jersey, a "home game" jersey and an "away game" jersey.  In our house, the fireplace mantel becomes the closet for the jerseys.
The most important piece of equipment for a hockey player is this:
 Gloves stink.
Shoulder pads stink.
Breezers stink.
Elbow and shin pads stink.
The socks and jerseys can be washed.
Everything else....stinks.
Airing it all out helps.
Febreze saves the day.

I love hockey.
To skate so gracefully and fast holding a stick and passing a puck takes skill.
It is definitely something I can't do and I'm amazed watching each and every game.

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