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The Best Shin Guards for Soccer Players

tough black shin guards for soccer isolated on grass background
Victor Moussa/Shutterstock.com

There are few moments as excruciatingly painful in soccer than when you’re looking to the sky, gripping your leg, and squeaking out those tired words: “I got kicked in the shin, again!” In a sport where this happens entirely too often, it’s important that you’re looking out for your limbs and avoiding a nasty hit. So, if you’re in the market to keep your legs bruise-free, then here are a few shin guard options that we think you ought to check out.

What to Look For in Your Next Pair of Shin Guards

Consider these factors when making a selection:

  • Defense: The perfect shin guard for every user will, at its bare minimum, provide a top-tier level of protection for the lower half of your legs. Protective pads vary from guard to guard depending on the style you select, whether that be a built-in type of defensive cushion or one that you must physically insert before taking the pitch. Seek out options that utilize dense, shock-absorbing materials like polypropylene and other plastics for the ideal collision dispersion.
  • Ease: On the other end of trusted protection, your shin guards should accommodate you with the utmost comfort while playing. Seek out options that know how to levy the weightier side of a guard with thin and cozy materials that are porous and elastic, as well as those that know how to keep you cool during those peak-heat scrimmages.
  • Sizing: It’s also important that you shin guard, well, guard your shine. An undersized set will leave much to be desired and might just have you gripping your legs in pain all too often. On the other hand, any pair that’s too large will rest uncomfortably between your ankle and knees. It’s a matter of sizing preference and how much leg space you feel is absolutely worth protecting.

Most Breathable Guards: HiRui Soccer Shin Guards

Shin guards constructed from thin, porous material with honeycomb-like protective padding.

For users seeking an option made from the most porous materials, these HiRui Soccer Shin Guards are tailored to ensure breathability and comfort while in motion. They feature a dry-fit, moisture-wicking fabric that stays warm when playing in the cold and stays cool on sunnier days. These guards also employ a unique design that conforms to a user’s shin while providing ideal protection with their large honeycomb crash pads.

Most Breathable Guards

Best Shock Absorption: G-Form Pro-S Elite Shin Guards

Low-profile shin guards that feature yellow padding on the outside

As elite as its name suggests, these G-Form Pro-S Elite Shin Guards offer beginners and soccer stars a revolution in luxury and protection. This pair of guards checks off the boxes you need in pursuit of your best performance on the pitch: weightless, elastic, and easy to clean at the end of a long session. What makes this pair of shin guards a cut above the rest is the integration of a full shin RPT pad that absorbs and disperses impact energy throughout the leg. And while you’re guaranteed full protection, these shin guards are designed with a low profile to maintain a limber and speedy edge over your competitors.

Best Shock Absorption

G-Form Pro-S Shin Guards, Iconic Yellow, Medium

This pair of guards disperses impact energy throughout the shin with a full-length RPT pad.

Best Slip-In Guards: Gonex Soccer Shin Guards

man slipping lightweight shin guards into the fabric covers

A pair of guards that can cover 50 to 60% of a user’s shins depending on their selected size, these Gonex Soccer Shin Guards are an ideal alternative to all-in-one options. Rather than create a guard that features a built-in collision pad, Gonex adheres to a traditional slip-in plate design that’s just as tough as the former and a heck of a lot easier to take care of, given that if the fabric tears, you can easily buy another holster rather than replacing the entire guard. But as far as protection goes, the slip-in plate is made from lightweight polypropylene plastic and features a gridded EVA padding that’s been put through the testing ringer to ensure your shins are safe in the heat of the moment.

Best Slip-In Guard

Gonex Soccer Shin Guards for Kids Adult, Youth Boys Girls Shin Guards Slip in Soccer Shin Pad Sleeves Canilleras for Football Games, EVA Cushion Protection Reduce Shocks & Injuries

This pair of shin guards utilizes a protective insert rather than built-in padding, making it easier to wash and maintain.

Most Secure Fit: Franklin Sports Superlight Soccer Shin Guards


front and back view of a densely padded Velcro shin guard with a sleek design on the frontAnother option that features an all-in-one type of protective design, this pair of Franklin Sports Superlight Soccer Shin Guards is a highly dense and stylish choice for every kind of player. Like other worthwhile options, these guards absorb shocking blows and then disperse the collision energy throughout the hardened foam. Each guard is equipped with double adjustable self-stick straps that can be tightened or loosened to provide users with the most symmetrical, firm, and secure fit.

Most Secure Fit

Franklin Sports Soccer Shin Guards for Youth + Adults - Superlight Shin Guards for Men, Women + Kids - (2) Shin Guard Set for Boys + Girls - Large

This pair of shin guards offers soccer stars plenty to enjoy, from its shock dispersion to its firm and symmetrical fit.

Best Youth Guards: Vizari Malaga Soccer Shin Guards

An elongated shin guard with a hardened polypropylene shell and a foam padding with a loop for the foot to go through on the bottom

Your go-to set when buying for a child or young teen, these Vizari Malaga Soccer Shin Guards provide everything you could expect out of an adult-sized option, only downsized to accommodate younger stars. From its lightweight polypropylene shell to its foam padded backing, each guard perfectly toes the line between the utmost protection and welcome comfort. Additionally, there’s an unbelievable amount of color across 12 sets, including a sky blue hue and a hot pink shade.

Best Youth Guards

Hollis Mills Hollis Mills
Hollis Mills is a freelance journalist and a content writer for LifeSavvy. He has a bachelor's degree in English literature, and as an undergraduate at Texas A&M University, Hollis wrote and edited for the nationally recognized student newspaper, The Battalion. When he's not writing, you can find him complaining about Boston Celtics basketball or giving plenty of peanut butter biscuits to his always-hungry Catahoula dog, Blue. Read Full Bio »
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