Maverik Lacrosse offers an elite level line of protection in their Rome products. While this line of padding has historically been really strong, Maverik has made some changes for their 2019 offering and the attention to detail, seamless mix of materials and padding, and mix of comfort and protection is truly impressive. Maverik is making some truly excellent lacrosse equipment these days and the Rome line is their most elite offering. After checking this stuff out for a couple weeks, I can certainly see why they are excited about what they have coming out this season!
Let’s start with the Rome Glove, and work our way up the arm!
The Rome fits snugly, and sits close to the hand with a low profile feel, but within moments of putting the glove on, I could also move my fingers, hand, and wrist quite freely. The high-quality materials and fit profile make this possible, and you can feel the difference right away in the soft perfect palms of the Rome glove. After playing just a little wall ball the gloves felt like I’d been wearing them for years, which is something I always look for in a great pair of mittens. Add on to the above that the glove’s padding and protection itself is excellent, and top of the line, and you’ve got a truly premium glove.
Now none of the above is really all that new. The Rome glove has always offered a high level of quality, comfort, and protection. So what makes the 2019 version so special? It’s the little things like the venting on the back of the hand, which is extremely well done and updated. Or the magnetic cuff connection, which is a genius move, and removes the issue of snagging your glove Velcro on your jersey or shorts. It also makes it easier to take your gloves off or put them back on. I love the magnets! Or it’s the actual inner cuff roll itself, which can be completely removed and still added back on easily if you change your mind.
These gloves are REALLY well thought out, highly advanced in their design and functionality, and offer the very best in terms of materials and quality construction techniques.
The Rome line offers three options for arm protection in the full-length Rome Arm Guard, the mid-sized Rome Arm Pad, and the smallest piece of protection, the Rome Elbow Pad. All three share traits as they aim to provide ultimate protection along with unmatched comfort, but the Arm Guard is really the prima donna of this group, and the sheer diversity of highly functional protective materials is what really draws me to this piece of equipment.
When I first put the Arm Guard on I was amazed by how light and low profile it was. The pad was so streamlined that I was actually worried about a lack of protection, but I went ahead and let one of my friends slash me in the arm while I was wearing it and… it was great! If it hadn’t been I probably wouldn’t be able to write this review. From top to bottom the Arm Guard is protective and flexible, and it’s an extremely impressive piece of equipment, so I wanted to ask the guys over at Maverik how they came up with a piece of equipment that had so much going on, but was also so highly functional.
I was able to speak with Geoff Legg, the Senior Brand Manager at Maverik, to learn more about their design process, and it started to dawn on me how a pad like the Rome Arm Guard, and a new padding technologies like E-Form, could come to life, but also just how long that process could take.
CW: How does Maverik find new materials, like E-Form, and then use these materials in a sports application, specifically for the benefit of the lacrosse athlete?
Geoff Legg: “We have a team of engineers who work incredibly hard to develop and source innovative technology. For example, we began developing our new impact attenuation system, E-Form three years ago, and it is just hitting the field as part of the Rome protective line this season. That process started with a goal: develop an innovative protective technology that did not inhibit movement. There are two key elements that distinguish E-form. The first is energy displacement. The E-form panels absorb impacts and distribute the force across the whole panel. Hard-sided arms, while protective, restricted natural arm motion. Our breakthrough was engineering the E-form material to respond to body heat. Within a few minutes, you notice the pad has conformed to your arm. The Rome arms promote full range of motion while offering rigid impact dispersion. The initial feedback from our pros was, “true love at first try on” as they recognized the improvements to the Rome line right away. For our pros, protection is paramount. These pads have to work effectively; if they do not offer effective protection, there are real consequences.”
I’d tend to agree with the pros on this one too. All three of the Rome arm protection options are top of the line products, comfortable, and highly protective, but the best part about them is that they really feel natural and don’t get in the way of playing the game – that’s the way it should be.
There is plenty of technology and flash in the Rome shoulder pad, and just like the gloves and arm pads it’s a top of the line product, but what separates the Rome from the shoulder pad pack is the fact that this piece of equipment offers more personalized padding options than anything I’ve seen before.
What do I mean by personalized padding? I mean that you can start with one of the most padded up shoulders in the game, and strip down parts to get exactly what you want out of shoulder pads, and that’s a really great option to have!
The full Rome Shoulder Pad has removable panels on both the chest and back, which allow it to transform from a full shoulder pad into a more of a collarbone liner, like the old foam liner pads. You can also take off the bicep pads, the shoulder caps as well as adjust sizing, and it means that a single shoulder pad can serve a lot of different needs for any player, any season, or any reason.
In the past, I had often added on to small shoulder pads, or cut away pieces from really big ones, but with the Rome Shoulder Pad all of that is gone, as I can seamlessly add on or take away padding as needed. It all fits, it all works, and nothing is ruined by me cutting away at it with dull scissors. The Rome Shoulder Pad is a great idea, and I love the level of personalized padding it offers.
I was curious how long a product like this, or the Rome line in general, takes to develop, as it’s clear that a lot of thought had to go into designing something so complex and multi-faceted. Once again, I hit up Geoff Legg for some answers.
CW: What kind of a timeline goes into developing a new product or an update to a product? How many hours are spent each day in the Maverik shop on R&D?
GL: “We release products only when they have meet our high standards for quality and performance. Most projects are measured in years rather than months. We are fortunate to have a team of engineers and designers who focus all of their daily energy on developing innovative equipment. They work with elite level players and teams at various age groups to validate each product. We understand the rigors and demand a player has for their product from drawing from our experience, asking the next generation of players — the Maverik Rome line is truly “Powered by the Player.”
CW: How does this institutional knowledge and research inform future decisions and advances, like how to make pads fit better, or what technology is best to use?
GL: “Lacrosse experience is fundamental to our design approach. We draw on our collective experience to isolate the features and benefits that are meaningful to players. For example, the Rome line offers a precise anatomical fit. Rome pads were designed to enable natural movement and eliminate restriction. With protection at the forefront, the Rome line contains all of Maverik’s premium protective technologies — E-Form, Anaform and Poron XRD. The personalization function in the Rome line is really groundbreaking as we’ve been to compliment the successes of its predecessors. The Rome line adapts to compliment your style of play. The body heat activated E-Form custom molds to the contours of your arms. The Rome shoulder components are highly adjustable and offer multiple layers of protection. The Rome Gloves will fully break in during the first practice thanks to a full AX Suede pro palm.”
2019 Rome Line – Final Thoughts
The Rome line of gloves, arm padding, and shoulders is truly elite level gear. It combines all of Maverik’s best technology and design elements and worked it all seamlessly into a single piece of equipment. It’s not tech for the sake of tech, it’s all there because it works. Functionality is the key here, and the fact that the products look cool is just an added bonus.
The 2019 Maverik Rome line is a truly fantastic next step in elite padding, and if you’re an elite level player looking to dominate the world of lacrosse I would highly recommend all of this gear for your future campaigns. Maverik has a winner in Rome.