While there are a multitude of awesome products that we have gotten to test during our time with The Instep, there is always some slight customization options that will forever separate us from the top-tier professional players and their ability to truly customize their equipment. However, we have begun taking our first steps towards obtaining a truly unique and completely customized piece of equipment. Because of the level of customization and the steps that we will be taking with the testing process, we felt it necessary to break this product’s testing up as we accomplish each step.
The product: SAK’s ELITE shin guards.
The first step: Total customization.
After choosing which model shin guard we want (for our testing, the ELITE), one of the first things that we have to do with these shin guards is to decide which size shin guard you would prefer. While it is recommended (and easiest) to simply follow the height chart that accompanies all shin guard sizing, some players prefer a particular size guard instead of simply wearing one that maximizes protection. Neither option can be considered “right” or “wrong,” but it simply is whichever size will make you feel the most comfortable when playing.
Another big step that SAK allows you to make with either shin guard option (ELITE or Kick-Off models) is to customize the look of your shin guard. Now, while it is a no-brainer that your shin guard will not get a lot of “air” time, it is always enjoyable to add your favorite colors, a logo, your name & number, or even your favorite picture. For me, this customization is all about something that you enjoy instead of trying to impress others, mainly because you will be the only one that truly knows what is hiding underneath your sock.
Once you have accomplished these steps, you will then get down to the customization of the guard to fit your leg. SAK gives you three leg options (thin, regular, wide) which focuses mostly on size difference with your calf and your leg as it approaches the knee. You also will input how tall you are and how much you weigh, allowing SAK to make sure that your guard is absolutely perfect.
We have sent in our vitals and chosen our custom graphics and our shin guards are being created as we speak. Once they arrive, we will let you know how close they were able to get to a perfect fit and we will then begin seeing if the custom experience is a massive improvement over buying a generic pair of guards. One thing we will say is that we are super excited to find out what this company has in store for us!