With all the falling and diving that is associated with football, it won’t take long before one suffers a major knee injury. The critical nature of the sports makes every player with the ball a potential victim of some rigorous hits. Between 2001 and 2005, there has been 1.1 million emergency room visits from players injured during play.
But knee injury has significantly led to the retirement of more players than any other injury. As such, if you don’t protect your knees with trusted knee pads, you’ll be putting your life, football career, and love for the sport at risk. To help you make an informed buying decision, this is a review of the ten best football knee pads. Why don’t you check them out?
Best Football Knee Pads
1. Schutt Sports Vinyl-Dipped Skilled-Position Football Knee Pad
The first knee pad on our list of best football knee pads is the Schutt Sports Vinyl-Dipped Football Knee Pad; this is one of the best knee pads mainly designed for football that we would suggest to a football player. The impressing aspect of this knee pad is that it is constructed out of high-quality vinyl material. We think this material is what makes this knee pad truly durable.
The Schutt Sports Vinyl-Dipped Football Knee Pad is quite impressive in delivering a fantastic level of protection in terms of preventing injuries, especially for players and athletes who hold skilled positions. This knee pad offers an excellent fit, whether you need small football knee pads or large ones. This is mainly because the pads are compatible with small and large knees.
The vinyl material used in this product also has a soft touch on the knees, which makes it offer comfort despite its sturdiness. This knee pad is genuinely comfortable to wear. It also boasts of a lightweight and user-friendly design.
This Schutt Sports masterpiece only requires you to put it under your long before your game so you will have an assurance of complete safety once in the field. It offers a great fit while covering your knees for ultimate protection. Despite its wide coverage, it still offers some space to stay agile once you start playing on the field.
2. Schutt VKP Lightweight Varsity Football Knee Pad
At number two on our list of best football knee pads is the Schutt VKP Varsity Football Knee Pad which is just as impressing as its name. We think that one strong point to note about this football knee pad is its lightness. It is lightweight and also allows you to play your game without worrying about it affecting your performance.
This product still allows you to move with ease. The fact that it has a sturdy vinyl-dipped construction is also a big advantage. This material ensures that the knee pad gives you the highest level of protection against any possible impact; this is because the vinyl-dipped material is known to be solid enough to protect your knee.
The product is also available in a varsity size, so if you are part of a varsity football league, then this knee pad will work perfectly in your favor. Another thing we noticed about it is that it is well-made because it comes from Schutt which is a truly reputable brand.
3. Adams USA Tuff Light Knee Pad Set
Coming in at number three on our list of best football knee pads is a complete set of knee pad. If you are interested in buying a knee pad set, this specific product offered by ADAMS USA is one of the best you can get. This knee pad set is lightweight, just like the knee pads, as mentioned above. This assures users that it will never be that difficult to wear on the field.
There is no need to worry about this product limiting your movements as a player, considering its lightness. It offers comfort in combination with its lightness as it also makes use of a foam cushion which helps to keep the knee safe during impacts.
The product has dimensions that are just enough to the majority of football players. Another significant feature of this knee pad is its ability to do its job of offering incredible knee protection to different types of users. It can even protect the knees of athletes who are a bit of a heavier side.
We are also pleased with the correct density used in this knee pad. This is because it is soft and capable of providing good protection. It is indeed a great knee pad for football players who really value their knees.
4. Gear Pro-Tec Z-Cool Football Knee Pad
The Gear Pro-Tec Z-cool is undoubtedly one of the best products out there in the market. This knee pad works well as a youth knee pad, adults knee pad and kids knee pad. This knee pad is sold in pairs just like most knee pads, and you will be able to provide full protection for both your knees. This knee pad makes you rest assured because you know that it truly works when it comes to giving your knees the protection they desperately need while you are on the football field.
We are also happy that despite being a great performer as far as protecting the knees is concerned, it will not affect your movements negatively in any way. In fact, it is very lightweight that you can still move around the field with ease and play at your best.
Another fun benefit of this product is that it has a vented design. It is well-ventilated, providing proper airflow as well as evaporative cooling, thereby giving you as much comfort as possible. The fact that it works for all football players of different levels also showcases the versatility of its overall construction. Also, it’s got the cheapest price on the list and it’s available in different sizes.
5. Schutt Youth Vinyl-Dipped Air-cushioned Knee Pad
A list of products that guarantee optimum level of protection won’t be complete without this popular product from Schutt. Amazingly, the Schutt Youth Vinyl-Dipped Air-cushioned Knee Pad offers it protection effortlessly without weighing down nor limiting players movements on the field, thereby resulting in player’s performing at full capacity and fast movements.
It’s a good thing that the manufacturer of this knee pad constructed it with the deep vinyl. This material is a huge advantage because it is not only sturdy but also provides a soft touch to the knees. It is lightweight and user-friendly, too. Using it involves putting it beneath your long socks prior to the game.
Once worn, it can give you peace of mind since you will feel truly safe. We are also pleased that this knee pad takes advantage of an air cushioning, which is truly effective in offering not only comfort but also a high level of protection. It is also well-padded, and this makes the knee pad extra comfortable.
We discovered that this knee pad improves the performance of football players because it offers them the chance to focus more on their gameplay instead of thinking and worrying about incurring a knee injury.
6. ADAMS USA Youth Tuff Lite Football Knee Pad
A great feature of this knee pad is that it is user-friendly. The product is quite easy to put on and take off. Attaching it to your pants or socks is also very easy. We are also impressed with the right dimensions used in this knee pad.
Another feature that is quite encouraging in this knee pad is that it makes use of a thick foam cushion. It is truly thick, which is a good thing if you want a knee pad that delivers its promise of offering players the required knee protection and adequate support
The good thing about the thick cushion foam used is that aside from being supportive and protective, it is also effective in the area of offering comfort. It is a good knee pad and it does not disappoint as it lives up to your expectations. It is also manufactured to be durable.
7. Riddell Youth Football Knee Pad
The next knee pad we would like to suggest to football players who are searching for a reliable, durable, and sturdy knee pad is the Riddell Youth Football Knee Pad. This knee pad comes in at number seven on our list. The versatility of this knee pad is quite impressing, considering the fact that it is not only manufactured for football players.
Athletes that play tennis, badminton, track and field, basketball, and other demanding sports can also take advantage of this knee pad. It provides protection to different athletes with its sturdy construction.
It can also resist impact force in case of rough gameplay, and this is owing to its high-density shock-absorbent property. With such features, we find it truly effective in giving its user’s knees utmost protection.
Despite being tough to offer protection and support, it still has a reasonable amount of padding and cushion for comfort. Another topnotch benefit that we would like to highlight in this product is that it is capable of retaining body heat. This is a good thing in warming the joints in your knees. It also works in boosting blood circulation.
8. Douglas Vinyl-coated Football Knee Pad
At number eight on our list of best football knee pads is the Douglas Vinyl-coated Rounded Foam Football Knee Pad is an ideal choice for you if you are searching for a durable knee pad. We are glad that this football knee pad was introduced to the public because it is worthy of being used by football players.
It is available in a single set containing one pair of football pads. We are glad that it works well for adult football players. It is also designed in a way that it can handle rough gameplay, so expect it to handle the blows and hits on your knees, giving your knees as much protection as possible.
This product is totally lightweight, which means that moving on the field with this knee pad worn is easy and comfortable. The vinyl-dipped material used in manufacturing this knee pad also helps in boosting its durability. The added cushion and its round shape are also designed in a way that it gives players as much comfort as possible.
9. McDavid 6440 Hex Football Knee Pad
Another highly impressive football knee pad that we suggest you should check out before you make a final knee pad purchase decision is the McDavid 6440 Hex. An impressive feature of this knee pad is its versatility and functionality. This knee pad can also be used to protect your chin and elbow asides from its usual knee protecting feature.
Another great thing about this product is that it utilizes the superior and unique hex technology, which is a closed-cell foam padding that gives the player the support and protection they need when playing collision or contact sports. The use of such technology makes the knee pad really durable.
With that, expect to be able to boost your performance in the football field. Another thing we truly like about this knee pad is that it uses moisture management technology. Such technology makes you stay dry and cool throughout the game.
This product is one of the most convenient knee pads that you can wear, because it is easy to use, maintain and clean. We also discovered that this knee pad is also one of those knee pads that can be washed and dried in a machine without worrying about possible damage. If black is your color, then you should love this.
10. Bodyprox Protective Knee Pad
The last product on our list of best football knee pads which we would like to suggest is the Bodyprox Protective Knee Pad, which is a quite reliable option for anyone who wishes to play football while providing the ultimate protection and support they need for their knees. It comes in a set with one pair of knee pads for both knees.
A great advantage of this product is that it boasts of a unisex design, making it suitable for both men and women. It is lightweight, which is a good thing as this helps to aid the easy movement of players. It can also protect your knee regardless of the contact sports you are playing.
Another thing that is pleasing about this knee pad is its ergonomic design. Such design gives players the comfort they need as it follows their natural movements. Aside from being good for athletes and footballers, it can also be used during exercises to prevent and protect yourself from knee injuries. You may check out our guide for best girdles.
This knee pad is also made of high-density cushion, which is durable, strong and elastic. The fabric used in the knee pad is also breathable; this is a good thing in boosting your comfortability in the field as it can keep your skin dry while letting you stay cool. It’s good to note that it’s available in only one color, black.
Buyer’s Guide - Things To Consider Before Buying A Football Knee Pad
There are different types of knee pads based on the kind of protection they offer and the event they are best suited for. Some of them are designed to offer protection for different engagements like dancing, exercise, acrobatics, and sports.
If you are searching for a knee pad for football, then ensure that it will deliver its main functions such as protection and support. However, it should also feature several properties, like lightness, comfort, stylishness, breathability, and flexibility. Knee pads have different categories based on the materials used to manufacture them.
They also different categories based on the type of padding used. For instance, some knee pads are manufactured with grooves padding, some are seamless, and some are hexagonal. There are also different types of knee pads based on the closures they possess. In the case of the sleeve type, these types of knee pad lack closures. The adjustable type of knee pad, on the other hand, has Velcro closures that you can use in wrapping.
#2. SIZE AND FIT
Before you buy a knee pad, ensure the size fits your knee perfectly. Because if it fits incorrectly, then it would be unable to give your knees the proper protection they require. If the knee pad is too big, they might be sliding up or down, and this will ultimately cause discomfort and reduce their ability to prevent injuries to your knees.
A knee pad which is too small will also cause discomfort because it tends to cut off blood circulation from the lower part of the knee, and this is bad to happen during play. Getting an ideal size and fitted knee pad is a priority to prevent these things from happening.
The most common materials used in the construction of knee pads include neoprene, spandex, leather, and cotton. Knowing this is important because the specific material used in the overall construction of the knee pad also plays a major role in determining if the knee pad is good and worthy of its features.
These materials are often used by manufacturers of knee pads because aside from being highly durable, they are also breathable and offers the highest level of comfort. You should also be aware that knee pads are often equipped with a material that offers shock-absorbing ability. It’s probably the most vital part of knee pads as it further guarantees adequate protection to the players.
The best shock-absorbent material is polyurethane; you should keep this in mind when choosing a knee pad. A gel-like material is also a good option because aside from being shock-absorbent, it is also elastic. It offers players a better range of motion while also protecting them in case of falls.
Are you planning on buying a shoulder pad as well? Read our review on the best football shoulder pads in the market.
#4. OVERALL CONSTRUCTION
You need to spend a little bit of time to check the overall construction of a knee pad in order to ascertain that it’s as neat and sturdy as it should be, among other reasons. Aside from checking the level of comfort and durability offered by the specific material used in manufacturing the knee pad, ensure that you assess the level of ventilation it offers.
Ensure that it is manufactured from a breathable material; one that can keep away or minimize sweat and also keeps your body dry at the same time. You can also try to get knee pads that feature a hard shell on their exteriors. Such hard shell further improves the level of protection and durability the knee pad offers when you fall on hard surfaces while playing.
If you play an extreme and demanding contact sports like football, such knee pads would be of utmost advantage to you so you should consider getting such a pad. Its overall durability can absorb impact and shock.
#5. SECURITY AND FLEXIBILITY
The flexibility and security that the knee pads offer plays a major role in determining whether you should buy it or not. You need to be sure that the knee pad will properly secure your knee while you’re on or off the field of play.
The flexibility of the knee pad is also crucial; the ideal knee pad is one that will never cause discomfort when you are wearing it. It should be able to adjust based on your movement and the specific position you play. However, you should be sure that asides from the security and flexibility it offers, it should be able to protect your knee accurately.
Ventilation in this context, refers to how easily air flows into your knee through the knee pad. High ventilation and breathability will help to determine the level of comfort you’ll get from the knee pad. This is because playing on the field with the knee pad on might make you feel hot. Considering this fact, you need a knee pad that offers a high level of ventilation so it will be breathable and provides as much comfort as possible
As little as it may seem, breathability is an important aspect to note when getting a knee pad. A knee pad that offers little breathability might make you feel uncomfortable, and this may affect your gameplay. So you should make enough research on this aspect as well before making a final buying decision.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
The first step towards wearing your knee pad is to turn your pants inside out. Also, note that knee pads need to go on your exterior pants. Put the pads in the lowest slots of your pants. Bend them if necessary, so they could fit well on your knees. 
Ensure that the rounded endpoints are down while the flat part is on top. Just like the other football pads you wear, ensure that the knee pad curve matches that of your knee when you pull on your pants.
There are different types of durable knee pads you can get as a football player which will help you secure and protect your knees during football games.
It is quite essential to get a good knee pad as this will assure you that your knees are safe from danger so you could concentrate on your game and perform at your best. You can also get some recommendations from your friends as to the type of knee pads they wear, and this will help you narrow down your options.
You can get one from the reputable Schutt brand or McDavid. Their knee pads are quite durable and protective. You will be satisfied with the level of protection they offer, and they are also quite affordable.
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You can use a pair of scissors to cut the topmost part of the knee pad in an arch. It is advisable to cut the knee pad that way to ensure that it appears professional while still reducing its size to fit your knees perfectly.
To avoid dealing with the hassle of cutting your knee pad, it would be best to find the perfect size and fit in the first place. Get the right size so you can boost the level of protection received by your knee without having to cut the knee pad.
The first step to maintaining your football knee pad is knowing exactly how to wash it properly. You can check the washing directions indicated on the buyer’s manual of your knee pad, and it will guide you throughout the washing process. Washing a knee pad basically requires cleaning of stains before actually washing them.
If there are grass stains or dirt, ensure you soak the pads in bleach first before putting them in your washing machine. You can wash them in the machine after soaking but ensure to check the label first to determine if you have to stick to a certain temperature for washing. Sticking to the recommended temperature will prevent the knee pads from shrinking and wearing out in little time.
Add the right amount of detergent to your washing machine and set it to cool and delicate wash. You should then start washing the knee pads. Ensure that you wash the knee pads separately from your other clothes. Once the first wash cycle is done, check the condition of the knee pad. If the stains are still there, soak them in bleach again and rewash for a second time. If the stains are fully removed, you can air-dry them. When they are dry, check if the pads still fit-in the same way before using them on the field of play. Doing these properly is one of the best ways to care for your knee pads.
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