Company: EvoShield / Product: Slash Guards / Price: $39.99
With box lacrosse being played everywhere and the professional league seasons underway as well, we want to highlight some indoor equipment (that could definitely be used for field lacrosse too) and make sure you get properly outfitted for all your protection needs.
Maybe it’s just the “tough guy” mentality fading away or gaining more wisdom as I get older, but as each year passes, my arm guards seem to get progressively longer and longer. Back in college I only ever wore defensive arm pads. After I graduated I promptly purchased a pair of STX K18 arm pads. With the winter months keeping any lacrosse I play indoors, I’ve recently discovered that I’m not as fond of getting slashed as I used to be, more so for the fact that the ensuing days stuck in the office make your body ache even more (“Ain’t nobody got time for that!”).
With that, I embraced the box mentality and went out and purchased a new pair of STX Shadow Arm Guards (Teaser: Upcoming Gear Review!) and some Evoshield Slash Guards so I could go hard to the paint each weekend and not worry about getting too beat up.
There isn’t anything special to these slash guards, they are made up of two pieces – the neoprene sleeve and the gel to shell insert. I’ll go into more depth on fitting it in the ‘Comfort’ section, but for appearance-sake, the design and look are both pretty safe and sound. Evoshield offers them in 11 different colors, that could match up to just about any team’s colors. I chose the black because I felt like anything else could end up becoming a target for my defender.
I made sure to do a little background research on Evoshield before I got to deep and messed something up. Thankfully, the guys over at Evoshield are all about rhyming and making everything easy to remember. To take full advantage of the gel to shell technology, you just have to follow three simple steps: 1) Rip it, 2) Fit it, and 3) Wear it. Check out the video for a little more on the fitting process.
Being a neoprene sleeve, it is obviously going to be a little more tight fitting, thankfully it isn’t over restrictive. All the model pictures show the sleeve going on the top of the wrist, but I feel like you get a lot more checks to the side of your wrist while you are holding your stick so I molded it to fit that area. Within 30 minutes, the gel had turned rock hard into the shell, I was definitely impressed.
After I put the shell into the sleeve, I slipped it on my arm and padded up. The pad was the perfect addition to my arm guards and gloves, covering the 3-4 inch space on my wrist normally exposed to checks. Even better, the Slash Guards don’t move or slide at all on your wrist, which also helps to deter your arm guards from slipping a little more.
As you’d hope with any piece of padding or protective equipment, the Evoshield does a great job covering the target area. Like I mentioned before, I molded the shell around the inside of my wrist. I always seem to get checked right there during groundballs and wild checks coming down on my wrist.
I noticed a big difference in my own playing during indoors, I wasn’t as hesitant on groundballs and situations where I knew I was about to get hacked. It was a nice assurance to not worry about getting hit there.
Long term, I feel these pads will last quite a while. If the shield ends up cracking, you can buy a replacement shield for just $10. Until that happens though, you should be pretty happy with the Evoshield (as long as you let it air out between games). The stitching is all reinforced and neither the sleeve nor the shield insert feel cheap at all. There isn’t really much to it, which probably helps it in the long run.
The Evoshield Protective Slash Guards ring up at $39.99 per pair. While this isn’t a terrible price by any means, I wish they were $10 cheaper. Not for any specific reason other than I just do, I like to keep my purse strings drawn tight. For the value you get out of them, I feel it is definitely worth the price.
At the end of the day though, as I purchased these myself, I’m obviously not too deterred by the price.
Overall Score: 8.2/10
An 8.5 out of 10 is a pretty fair score for these. You have to remember too, that this is more of an accessory than anything else. Indoors, I will probably wear these every game from here on out for the added protection alone.
Would I play with these outdoors though? Doubtful. Maybe if it was to cover up an injured wrist or something along those lines. Connor and I were actually discussing the uses of these pads in field lacrosse and both agreed this could be something to throw on towards the end of a long tournament after you’ve had several games worth of checks to you arms.