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What is the Difference Between Hockey Pants and a Girdle?

What is the difference between hockey pants and a girdle? If you’re looking for answers to this question, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve put together this guide to help you understand the main difference between Hockey pants and hockey girdles. So, read on!

What is the difference between hockey pants and a girdle? This question is pretty common among rookie hockey players. If you’re new to the sport and wondering how a hockey pant differs from a hockey girdle, you’re not alone. The debate is popular in hockey changing rooms and forums.

However, the main difference between hockey pants and hockey girdles is how they fit on the body. While hockey pants are loosely fitting, hockey girdles are tightly fitting and look like compression shorts. In addition, players have used hockey pants for a long time, while hockey girdles have only been around for a few years.

This is only the tip of the iceberg. Honestly, there are more differences and similarities between a hockey girdle and a hockey pant.

However, you can only find out if you stick around to the end. That’s why I’ve put together this comprehensive guide to help answer the question and clear any doubts.

So, let’s get to it!

Hockey Pants Vs Hockey Girdle Comparison table

Comparison element/Ice hockey GearHockey PantsHockey Girdle
1. Fit/SizeLoosely fittingTightly fitting
2. WeightFeels relatively heavyFeels relatively lightweight
3. Protective PaddingBuilt loosely into the pantsBuilt firmly into the pants (Some have built-in cups)
4. Additional WearHeld by a belt and Suspenders around the waist (Players wear cups and supporters separately)Shell is required  
5. Material CompositionPadding made from foam polyester (Nylon/polyester exterior shell)Padding made from hard plastic or double density foam material Compression fabric (nylon and spandex)
6. Priceaverage range $49.98 – $229.99average range $79.99 – $169.99
7. Best BrandsBauer, CCM, WarriorBauer, CCM, Warrior, Tackla
8. Hockey CategorySenior, Intermediate, Junior Youth, WomenSenior, Intermediate, Junior, Referee

Hockey Pants Vs Hockey Girdle Comparison

What is the difference between hockey pants and a girdle?
Hockey Girdle

Below is a detailed comparison of hockey pants vs. hockey girdles. Let’s jump right in!

1. Fit/Size

The main difference between hockey pants and girdles is the fit. While the traditional hockey pants are relatively baggy and loosely fitting, girdles are tightly fitting. Wearing hockey girdles feels like compression shorts or pants because they stick to the skin.

2. Weight

Girdles feel lighter than hockey pants because of how they fit. Hockey pants are baggy, meaning they are made from more volume fabric. On the other hand, girdles are tightly fitting, so only a limited amount of fabric is used to make one.

In addition, hockey pants’ protective pads are loosely fitting and hanging inside the pants. On the contrary, girdles have firm in-built protective padding. This makes pants generally heavier than girdles.

3. Protective Padding

Both hockey girdles and pants have protective padding on them. The best part is they’re built into the gear for players’ convenience. The main difference between hockey pants padding and girdle padding is how they fit into the gear.

While hockey pant paddings are loosely fitting and hanging inside the pants, hockey girdle paddings firmly fit into the girdle.

4. Additional Wear

While hockey pants are loosely fitting, they sometimes tightly fit around the waist area. However, players whose pants don’t fit well can use a belt or suspenders.

In addition, players using pants have to wear Cups and supporters separately for additional protection.

On the other hand, girdle players don’t need suspenders because the girdles are already tightly fitting. In addition, some girdles have built-in cups, so you won’t have to buy cups separately unless you want to.

However, some girdles don’t have built-in cups, so you’ll have to buy them. Lastly, owning a pair of girdles also means you get some hockey shells.

This is a short, like clothing worn over hockey girdles, especially by players who play for different teams.

5. Material Composition

Hockey pants have an exterior shell whose material is nylon or polyester. Usually, the hockey pant paddings are made from foam polyester.

On the other hand, girdle paddings are usually made from hard plastic or double-density foam material.

In addition, the exterior material is made from a sturdy and durable compression fabric—nylon and spandex.

6. Price

Both girdles and pants fall within the same price range, though pants are slightly pricey. Overall, the average hockey pant price is between $49.98 and $229.99. On the other hand, hockey girdles cost an average of between $79.99 – $169.99.

7. Best Brands

The same brands make both hockey pants and hockey girdles. Some of the best brands on the market are Bauer, CCM, Warrior, and Tackla. However, the top two brands you can never go wrong with are Bauer and CCM. Always keep that in mind when shopping for either hockey pants or girdles.

8. Hockey Category

Hockey pants and girdles are made for all categories of players. The common categories are;

  • Senior
  • Intermediate
  • Junior
  • Youth
  • Women
  • Referee

You’ll almost find the right fit pants or girdles based on your category.

What is the Difference Between Hockey Pants and a Girdle?
Hockey Pants

What is the Difference Between Hockey Pants and a Girdle? Pros and Cons

Ice Hockey Pants Pros

  • Tried and tested over long period.
  • Made of study material for longevity.
  • Belt for extra fitting for optimal performance.
  • Built in padding.
  • Made by some of the best brands.

Ice Hockey Pants Cons

  • Moderately pricey.
  • May be too loosely fitting for some players.
  • May be moderately heavy.
  • Additional wear like suspenders are required.

Best Hockey Pants for Juniors and Seniors

1. Bauer Supreme Ultrasonic Senior Ice Hockey Pants

2. CCM Jetspeed FT4 Pro Senior Hockey Pants

3. Warrior Covert QRE 10 Junior Hockey Pants

4. Bauer Prodigy Youth Hockey Protective Bottom

Ice Hockey Girdle Pros

  • Tightly fitting
  • Relatively lightweight
  • Built in and fitting protective padding
  • Made from sturdy composite fabric materials for longevity.
  • Affordable.
  • Made by some of the best brands worldwide

Ice Hockey Girdle Cons

  • Requires an extra wear called hockey shell which may be costly to some people.
  • One may have to constantly adjust the girdle, especially when it’s too tight.

Best Hockey Girdle on the Market

1. Bauer Supreme ACP Pro Senior Ice Hockey Girdle

2. Bauer Supreme ACP Pro Junior Ice Hockey Girdle

3. True XC9 Pro Junior Hockey Girdle w/ Pant Shell

What is the Difference Between Hockey Pants and a Girdle? FAQs

1. Are Hockey Girdles Lighter than Pants?

Hockey girdles are lighter than pants since they’re tight-fitting and are made from lightweight compression materials like nylon and spandex.

2. How Does a Hockey Girdle Work?

A hockey girdle works the same way as the traditional hockey pant. However, the girdle is more tightly fitting than hockey pants. In addition, the hockey girdle is made of compression fabric and has inbuilt protective padding to protect the thighs, loins, and butt when playing hockey.

3. Do NHL Players Wear Girdles?

All NHL hockey players have the choice to wear girdles or hockey pants. It all boils down to personal preference. However, NHL players who wear girdles have to cover them with hockey shells.

Hockey Girdles Vs Hockey Pants | Final Verdict

Choosing between hockey pants and hockey girdles can be a hassle to some rookie players. However, it’s not as hard as you may want to believe. The main difference between hockey pants and hockey girdles is the fit.

Overall, each piece of equipment has pros and cons. So, choosing either of them is subjective and depends on one’s preference. However, girdles come in handy when you play for multiple teams, and you don’t have money to buy hockey pants for all the teams. I hope you found this guide helpful!

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Navick Ogutu
Navick Ogutu

Navick Ogutu is the author at Elite SkateVers and writes about skating. He is the founder and CEO OF Elite SkateVers adn goes skating with friends over the weekend. Contact as to learn how Elite SkateVers can help you learn how to skate fast or improve your skating skills.

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