How to Choose Hockey Goalie Masks
Here is what you need to do...
Step one in choosing the right goalie mask for you is based on its intended use. Depending on whether its use is for recreational leagues, minor and youth hockey, amateur mid-level hockey or professional, high caliber hockey, your choice of goalie mask will differ greatly.
Step two in choosing the right goalie mask for you, regardless of age or playing level is fit. Similar to hockey helmets, goalie masks must be a snug fit in order to be a proper fit. The main difference with goalie masks is that they are far more adjustable than player helmets so a snug fit is relatively easy to achieve so long as you procure the proper sized goalie mask. (*For more information on the size of goalie masks, please consult the special attention section below.)
If you plan on buying a goalie mask for recreational or youth/minor hockey use, it is recommended that you purchase an entry levelgoaltender mask as they are the least expensive models of goalie mask. These goalie masks are lightweight and made from a combination of plastics and fibreglass with mild carbon composite reinforcements. All goalie mask cages are made from high resistance metals such as titanium.
If you plan on buying a goalie mask for amateur or mid-level competitive hockey, it is recommended that you purchase a competitive goaltender mask. These goalie masks are manufactured from high tensile woven fibreglass and are perfect for young, developing goaltenders playing competitive high school or Bantam/Midget hockey. All goalie mask cages are made from high resistance metals such as titanium.
If you plan on buying a goalie mask for professional or high calibre hockey, it is recommended that you purchase an elite goaltender mask. These are the highest end goaltending masks available and are made from space-age ballistic materials such as Kevlar. High impact carbon composites are used to reinforce the mask while high density, dual foam padding on the interior of the helmet and back plate offer superior protection. All goalie mask cages are made from high resistance metals such as titanium.
Step six in choosing the right goalie mask for you is pricing. Although online prices are often cheaper than in-store prices, it is heavily recommended that you try on the exact helmet you intend to buy as this will allow you to use your helmet specifications to compare prices online. Buying directly from the manufacturer is now a possibility online and, although it may sometimes cost more, often allows the purchaser to receive a superior warranty than what is available through most stores or outlets.
Difficulties people often experience or parts that need special attention to do it right.
Size charts for goalie masks are not universal as each manufacturer has their own unique measurement process. Since this is the case, it always recommended that you view the goalie mask size chart from the manufacturer of the particular helmet you are interested in. This way, by consulting the specific size chart, you will know more precisely what size goalie mask is right for you.
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Funny or interesting story about this topic...
The hockey goalie mask first came to be thanks to legendary Hall of Fame goaltender, Jacques Plante. While playing goal for the Montreal Canadiens in the playoffs in 1959, an era when no hockey player wore any protection on their head, Plante took a shot off of his face and was forced from the game to get treatment from the medical staff. With no one to replace him and a desire to play through his injuries, Plante donned the very first goaltender mask and was back in his crease the very next period. Although he did not begin wearing the mask full-time until the following season, this marked the very first time hockey that a goaltender embraced wearing a full face mask.
When did you first do this & how did you get started?
Although I grew up playing forward and defense on the ice, I always loved to play goalie when we played out on the street. In comparison to player equipment, goalie equipment is bulkier, heavier and not always the easiest thing to move around in, yet despite that, the one thing I always appreciated was how important it was for a goalie to see. While a player mask offered the view and protection a forward or defenseman needs, the goaltender must see more and be protected in more areas, hence why goalie masks are designed in such a different manner from player helmets. Their functional design also serves as a creative template for the goaltender to show some of his personality as goalie masks, unlike player helmets, can be painted and stylized in a manner of colors and designs.