At different levels of play, shinguards are stressed when it comes to soccer. No matter what age or level you play at, a pair of shin guards are essential for your safety on the soccer field.
The only way for shin guards to be worth it is to provide value to the player. That means not only providing a certain level of protection, but comfort as well. If there is anything that gets in the way of playability, that is a huge no-no.
The shin guards listed below are all great options to choose from. All of them come in different sizes, so taking measurements and going off recommendations is crucial before making a purchase.
1. Adidas 11 Lesto Shin Guards
Adidas is arguably the most recognized name in soccer, so it should come as no surprise that they make a great type of shin guard, especially for younger players. Maybe the best of the best is the Adidas 11 Lesto, as the slip-on guards work correctly for players who need support without having to think too much about it.
These guards are simple, yet very useful. They work with just about any type of sock set up, and although the materials used a pretty basic, it does the job. The best thing is that these guards fit with very little effort, as players can slip them on multiple sizes and go from there.
This affordable solution is designed for the beginning players, although some will end up using them for an extended period of time.
- Trusted name
- Multiple ways to adjust for a secure fit
- Stay in place
- A little expensive
2. Nike Mercurial Lite Soccer Shin Guards
Playing soccer in these shin guards is going to offer people the best of the best when trying to stay safe. No one wants to be in a situation where they are not playing like a professional, simply because they might be fearing a significant injury. These shin guards are the same ones used by top-level players.
There are reasons why people spend a good amount of money on these shinguards when others are available. It starts with the overall weight and comfortable feel, as it really feels like there is nothing on the body during the action. They have a really low profile that is crafted not only for the shins, but for the left and the right.
They match up nicely with anyone who has Nike Mercurial cleats as well. If the goal is to have a blend of high-level protection with some very good comfort when moving around, this is the way to go.
- High quality build
- Nike brand matches up with Nike cleats
- Might take time getting the right size
3. Venum Predator Standup Shin Guards
There are very few people who play soccer who do not understand that there are some creative options out there for shin guards. They do not always have to be specifically designed for soccer to still work. Mixed martial artists need shinguards as well, and those people who want an extra level of protection could go with a trusted option like the Venom Predator Standup shin guards.
With a full wrap around the shin, people get that next-level protection. Anyone who has suffered from injuries in the past might feel like this is the way to go. Not every league is going to allow this level protection, but most of them feel like it is a necessary move so people can feel like they are protected on the pitch.
They are a bit expensive, but worth it to those who want to protect themselves as much as possible. They do not limit movement at all, but it does take some time to get used to.
- Ultimate protection
- Very durable
- Provides top of the foot protection as well
4. Adidas Ghost Pro Shin Guards
One of the most trusted brands out there for shin guards is Adidas, and many consider this to be the top of the line. They offer quite a bit of customization with this option, as the sleeve can have different pieces added when needed. As long as a person gets the fit right, everything can smoothly right against the body and feel like there is hardly anything there.
These shin guards might not provide the ultimate amount of protection, but what they do is allow people to get some compression with a sleeve as well as protection with the guard. Players can sometimes fatigue in the calf and shin area, so having a little bit of compression there is worthwhile.
Another advantage is that the sleeves can be washed pretty easily, so it is less of a hassle to keep everything as clean as can be. Some shinguards are harder to clean, especially if they do not come apart so easily.
- Easy to take on and off
- Fits right up against the leg
- Adidas’ top line option
- Sizing is tricky to figure out initially
- Not the strongest guards against slide tackles
5. Adidas Ghost Club Shin Guards
Think of these as the slightly more inexpensive option compared to the ones above. They are made of material that is not as strong and versatile, and the fit is a little harder to get just right. Other than that, people should be more than satisfied with these shin guards as a way to stay protected.
This is more or less a recreation version of the other shin guards. Not everyone is going to benefit from something like this, but it certainly helps to have a level of protection when playing around people who might not always know what they are doing. There is more of a chance of injury in the shins with players recklessly playing the sport.
Since they are slightly cheaper, some people also invest in multiple pairs so that they always have a clean one ready to go. With more expensive options, it becomes harder to have multiples. These shin guards match up nicely with any Adidas shoes or outfits, and that is always nice to complete any outfit.
For a nice, middle-of-the-road option that is not too out of this world expensive, these shin guards do the trick. They do have the option of allowing people to change up their level of protection by putting a new guard into the sleeve, which is always nice.
- A step up from entry-level shin guards
- Shares a lot of characteristics of the more expensive Ghost Pro line
- Easy to size
- A lot of average qualities, with no stand out features
- Availability fluctuates online
6. Nike J Guards
The Nike brand is well respected in the soccer industry, but some of the top options might still be a little too expensive for some shoppers out there. The Nike J Guards are a perfect solution for those who do not want to spend a ton of money, but still want a decent amount of protection.
There is not too much to these shin guards, as they are pretty lightweight, and slip into a compression sleeve for instant use. There are some holes on the shin guards, which help with breathability. Some people will go without the sleeve, just putting the shin guards directly underneath the sock instead. As long as the sock has decent compression, that should be able to work.
Do not expect these to last too long, just because they are made of the most durable material. Most of the people shopping for these are either playing casually, or they do not mind having to replace their shin guards some
Anything lower than this from Nike should probably be avoided. This is their best value option so that people can get protection and still have the swoosh on it.
- Great breathability thanks to the holes
- Simplistic design
- Strong to a certain extent
- Does not last all that long
- Easy to displace when moving around or getting hit
7. Franklin Sports Superlight Shin Guards
The Franklin Sports Superlight shin guards are a great value option for soccer players looking to stay under budget. The company has quite a few different products out there for the budget-conscious, and the shin guards have a few features not found elsewhere.
For starters, these shin guards are pretty lightweight, as the name implies. They are capable of molding to a leg, which is a surprise to a lot of people. They have a low profile overall, so they fit under just about any sock.
They also hold up better than just about any shin guard out there. People can expect to get a lot of matches and practices out of these before they need to be replaced.
Some complaints online surround the fact that they might not be that stylish, but it does not matter too much since it will be underneath a sock anyway. No one even has to know a person is wearing Franklin shin guards if it matters that much.
- Very strong
- One of the lightest options a person can invest in
- Branding/design is a bit much for some
- Compression drops faster than some other options
Final Buying Tips
Injuries to the shinbone from a kick or tackle happen quite a bit in soccer, but proper shin guards can help with that. Do not overlook this investment, even if they are only used for practice and training. You can read more about why shin guards are important in this post.
Since a lot of the companies use the same material for protection, the ultimate test is trying them on and playing in them if possible.
Most people are going to be able to make a definitive decision until they get a chance to sample the fit specifically for them.
Some companies online will allow for free returns, so take advantage of that and try a few options before ultimately deciding.