In all fairness, the best equipment isn’t going to make you a better soccer player. However, we’re pretty sure that using the wrong kind of equipment may alter your performance.
One of the essential pieces of soccer gear to wear is the shin guards. They’re fundamental no matter your position on the field or your level of play.
What counts the most when selecting the shin guards?
The right size and shape are fundamental when selecting your soccer shin guards, but there are more factors to take into consideration when buying.
Comfort or the level of control comes into the equation too. Before going with the details any further, here’s a fun fact: all shin guards are designed according to the measurements and shaping of professional players. It’s the main reason for which various brands are creating different shin guards, rending them to provide particular fits.
Which type should you choose?
When it comes with shin guards, there are three main types:
- Shin socks
The shin socks come with socks built-in for more versatility. Many youth players like them as they’re easy to put on/take off.
- Slip-in shin guards
They are lightweight shields that you may wear underneath your socks. Some socks are tight enough and keep the guards in place. However, many soccer players use stays/tape/compression sleeves for keeping them in place throughout the whole game.
Many professional soccer players like the slip-in guards for the freedom of movement that they provide.
- Ankle shin guards
They provide excellent protection, and it’s common for intermediate and young players to use them. The ankle shin-guards have padding on both sides of the ankle, protecting it from kicks.
Many models come with stirrups that slide underneath your feet, and a hook-and-loop strap/elastic band that you may wrap around the calf for providing a snug fit.
You may find models with removable ankle guards, allowing you to wear only the shin shield once your performance has improved.
We have one last tip to mention!
The shin guard has to fit right, and the size of the shins depends on your height. When you’re selecting your shin guards from a respected manufacturer, you’ll notice the sizing guidelines. Give it a good look before placing your order.
Don’t forget that the shin guard has to cover most part of the area between your knee and ankle. A snug fit is ideal, with at least 2″ below your knee.
TOP 10 Best Soccer Shin Guards
1. Vizari Malaga Soccer Shin Guards
If your little one is high on soccer, using protective equipment is fundamental for his/her protection. The Vizari Malaga Soccer Shin Guards are an excellent choice for kids since they’re affordable, and we know how fast kids outgrow their clothing and gear.
The shin guards have padded foam backing, which increases the level of comfort. They come as a pair and present front strap closing, for easy use.
They’re lightweight, but feature a hard shell for better efficiency on the field. On top of everything else, they come in pretty colors that all kids love.
To give you a clue about sizing, you should know that size Small is suitable for a kid up to 4’7″.
Here’s our take on the pros:
- They have a hard shell and foam padded backing
- They’re easy to use and have strap closing on the front
- They come in pretty colors
- They’re lightweight and efficient
The cons aren’t major:
- Some scratches may happen
- One may need to size up when buying
As they’re affordable, reliable, and nice-looking, the shin guards are a great addition to your kid’s soccer equipment.
2. Nike Mercurial Lite Shin Guard
Anyone looking for light shin guards should take a look at the Nike Mercurial Lite Shin Guard. Not only that they’re affordable, but the shin guards provide robust protection while remaining lightweight.
They have a hard shell that protects from the impact during the game. The contoured sleeve provides a secure fit but stays breathable enough.
The shin guards have a low profile shell and feel comfortable. The sleeves ensure a secure fit, and you don’t need any straps. They stay in place and have anatomical specific fit.
Easy to put on and to take off, the shin guards feel secure and are NOCSAE approved.
Here’s what convinced us:
- They’re lightweight and have a rigid shell
- The sleeve is contoured for a perfect fit
- They’re breathable and comfortable
- They have a low profile and stay in place
We don’t make a drama out of the minor flaws:
- Some find them challenging to clean
- One noticed mold building up, despite regular cleaning
As long as you remain focused on the functional aspects, you shouldn’t sit on the fence when shopping and buy them.
3. Franklin Sports Superlight Soccer Shin Guards
Even if the price may seal the deal for many, the Franklin Sports Superlight Soccer Shin Guards don’t disappoint on performance and overall value either.
The shin guards present a lightweight build, and many are going to fancy the unique chrome detailed design. The shield impresses with the high-density abrasion resistance, whereas the symmetrical design ensures an anatomical and comfortable fit.
The energy absorption is efficient thanks to the high-density foam. We also notice double adjustable straps (self-stick) which allow a secure and tight fit for the shin guards.
Let’s have another look at the best qualities:
- They’re lightweight and comfortable
- The design is symmetrical for anatomical fit
- They feature double adjustable straps
- They’re well-padded and look nice
There aren’t many things to worry about:
- The breathability could be a lot better
- Some think that they may become uncomfortable after a while
Affordable, lightweight, dependable, and protective, the shin guards are the jack of all trades for many soccer players.
4. Adidas Performance Ghost Pro Shin Guards
The Adidas Performance Ghost Pro Shin Guards is yet another example of how Adidas knows how to design the right gear. Made with 95% polypropylene and 5% TPU injection-molded, the shin guards provide excellent fit and comfort.
The front plate is separated, which explains bot the excellent fit and the high level of comfort. The compression sleeve makes you forget that you’re wearing a guard.
The shin guards come with EVA backing for long-lasting and comfortable cushioning, rendering them to provide right height and fit. They present good build and seem durable.
They’re easy to clean and dry out fast. You can go with black style or select a more colorful combo too.
Let’s have a double-check of the best aspects:
- They have separated front plate
- The compression sleeve feels comfortable
- The EVA backing ensures excellent cushioning
- They’re well-made and long-lasting
No shin guards are perfect, and neither are these:
- Some think the fit is a bit narrow
- If you’re looking for flexibility, they’re not the best choice
The good outweighs the bad, and you want to try them as they’re comfortable, reliable, and durable.
5. Nike Adult Charge 2.0 Soccer Shin Guard
The Nike Adult Charge 2.0 Soccer Shin Guard present an anatomic shape and have a pull-on design for straightforward use. They fit the contours of your shin for best comfort.
The soccer shin guards come with polypropylene shell, for a low-profile. The molded EVA foam backing offers excellent protection and covers a big area.
They’re lightweight and very well made, taking the use for a long time. Once you put the shin guards on, they stay in place. Even if there aren’t numerous colors to choose from, they’re excellent options.
The top-notch quality makes them a good buy on any given day.
Here’s what makes us like the soccer shin guards:
- They’re lightweight and very well made
- They have an anatomic shape and pull-on design
- They provide a lot of coverage
- They’re comfortable and stay in place
We’re not worried about the shortcomings:
- When you’re wet, taking them off isn’t easy
- Some think that the straps are short
Regardless of the minor problems, the soccer shin guards are reliable, comfortable, and very well made. Why not try them?
6. DashSport Soccer Shin Guards
When you decide to go with DashSport Soccer Shin Guards, you get shin guards and compression sleeves for just one price, rending them to be a good buy.
The shin guards are protective and comfortable, whereas the compression calf sleeves are silky soft. They don’t cause any irritation and provide light compression on your calf.
The shin guards feature a hard shell but feel lightweight. The sleeves come with pockets and increase the blood flow. They’re supportive of the calves and help the shin guards stay in place throughout your game.
The sleeves are breathable, and the padding feels nice. They’re both made with right quality materials.
Here’s why we like the set so much:
- You get shin guards and compression sleeves with pockets
- The shin guards have a hard shell
- The sleeves are breathable and don’t cause irritation
- They’re comfortable and protective
The shortcomings are nothing major:
- The shin guards run on the narrow side
- One may find the sleeves too big
More often than not, both the shin guards and the compression sleeves are going to be what you need, so don’t skip them when shopping.
7. DashSport Soccer Shin Guards -Youth Sizes
Another great option from DashSport for the young soccer players out there is the DashSport Soccer Shin Guards -Youth Sizes.
The shin guards are specially designed for boys and girls, which is why they are protective and flexible at the same time.
It’s not a slip in style for the shin guards, as they come with ankle support sleeve for increased protection throughout practice or games.
The padding is thick enough, without presenting a risk for moisture building up. The elastic straps at the top help the shin guard stay in place, without reducing the level of comfort.
Putting the shin guards/taking them off is straightforward. Making adjustments for the best fit are also straightforward.
If you want to keep the shin guards in the best shape, you should hand wash them when needed.
We appreciate the following aspects:
- They’re protective and comfortable
- They’re designed for boys and girls
- It’s ankle support sleeve design for the shin guards
- They fit well and are easy to adjust
None of the inherent flaws is undermining the overall value:
- You cannot machine wash them
- The padding may render them to feel a bit bulky
Any parent is going to be satisfied with the shin guards as they’re protective, comfortable, and dependable for kids.
8. G-Form Pro-S Elite Shin Guards
The G-Form Pro-S Elite Shin Guards are loaded with amazing features, which recommends them for multi-sport use.
They’re flexible and design to vent while you’re bending, which is why the risk for heat building up is rather small. RPT technology reacts to impact so that the shin guards offer fantastic protection. They take in and disperse impact energy, without ever compromising on the flexibility or weight. Their top layer fabric is going to slide on court and field surfaces, easing out your performance.
The shin guards are lightweight and breathable, with low risk for heat and sweat. Once you put them on, they stay in place, eliminating the need for other sleeves or tapes.
They’re made with moisture-wicking and UPF 50+ compression material that keeps you dry and comfortable throughout the entire practice or game.
On top of everything else, the shin guards are machine washable after every use, without losing their proprieties.
The shin guards have a low and sleek profile.
Let’s highlight our favs:
- They’re lightweight and breathable
- They’re comfortable, flexible, and protective
- You can machine wash them
- The risk for overheating is low
The minor flaws aren’t deal breakers for sure:
- They provide a tight fit, so make sure you choose the right size
- It’s not very easy to take them off due to the snug fit
Even if the shin guards aren’t all roses and rainbows, they’re still one of the best investments to make for your soccer game.
9. Storelli BodyShield Leg Guards
The Storelli BodyShield Leg Guards protect the lower leg and come with ankle sleeve and shin guard pocket. The body is made with 82% nylon and 18% spandex foam.
The shin guard is made with material that protects skin from the dangerous UV rays. It’s also made with anti-bacterial treatment, reducing the risk for odors and germs.
The build is good since the shin guard is armored with material that takes in more than 90% of the impact. It’s lightweight yet effective and dependable.
The moisture-wicking compression fabric ensures breathability and cooling comfort. The shin guards are flexible, allowing freedom of movements.
Here’s the list of best features:
- They are protective and comfortable\
- The fit is snug, yet breathable
- They are lightweight and present nice flexibility
- They also protect against the UV rays
The downsides aren’t something to make you change your mind:
- Some doubt their durability
- The padding is thin, according to some
Since the shin guards bring so many good things to the table, we see no reason whatsoever for which you shouldn’t give them a try.
10. Adidas F50 Techfit Shin Guard
Truth be told, the first thing you’re going to notice on Adidas F50 Techfit Shin Guard is their looks. The anodized purple, the red accents, and the golden logo are going to draw attention on any field.
But the shin guards are more than meets the eye. The primary material is 83% ethylene vinyl acetate and 15% polyethylene.
The design is well thought out, and the shield is easy to detach. The backing is made with EVA cushioning, so it’s soft and durable. The front plate is highly protective as it’s made with a hard shell.
The Power Web is placed so that it improves your performance. The compression sleeve comes with a pocket, improving the blood backflow to the center of the body. Putting them on is rather effortless.
Despite their efficiency, the shin guards are lightweight and comfortable.
Let’s view the most important pros:
- The design is well thought out
- They look great
- They’re protective, yet lightweight
- They’re comfortable and dependable
The parts we don’t like that much aren’t many:
- Some expected even better performance
- The compression sleeve is black
Wrapping it all up, we recommend that you take the plunge with the shin guards as they’re dependable and high lookers too.
FAQs on soccer shin guards
Q: Does your position on the field matter when selecting the shin guard?
A: If you’re playing just one position, it’s better that you look for a shin guard that is designed for improving your performance. Here are some tips to remember:
- A defender goes through a lot on the field, so he needs a tough shin guard with ample protection, even of the ankle area.
- A midfielder needs both protection and flexibility, which is why he should look for a shin guard that is both flexible and protective.
- Forwards need shin guards that let them have fast changes in directions and explosive bursts. They should always look for the smallest, lightest models for maximum mobility.
- A goalkeeper doesn’t need much protection, so a lightweight model with minimal padding will do it.
Q: Do you need a shin guard sleeve too?
A: If you choose slip-in shin guards, you may need to buy shin guard sleeves for a snug fit. The shin guard has to stay in place throughout the whole 90 minutes.
Q: When is the guard tape required?
A: Some soccer players wrap the tape around the socks at the top and bottom, keeping the shin guard in place. The tape gives you the possibility to achieve precisely the level of firmness you want for your shin guard.
Q: Are shin guard stays a good option?
A: Shinguard stays are a solid choice when you don’t like using the tape. Most shin guard stays aren’t difficult to wrap around your leg, presenting a hook-and-loop system for closure.
Q: When to use ankle guards?
A: Some shin guards don’t include ankle guards, but you may add them later if necessary. You need to make sure that you select a design that works for you.
Q: Are all shin guards required on the field?
A: Shin guards are part of the required equipment in all levels of soccer. It’s the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE) that regulates the use for different models of shin guards. You can check the tag on your shin guards for the “Meet NOCSAE Standards” and go online for more information. Nevertheless, you have to check the rules of your soccer organization to make sure your shin guards have a green light for the game.