So today was our first lesson in a lonnnggg time! I think it’s been close to a month for me, given all the traveling I’ve been doing since the end of June. It was a really good lesson though! We worked on some in tight drills, lots of drills incorporating slides, a few slapshot-from-the-point drills. All in all, a really great practice session and definitely some progress has been made (both for me and for Colin).
Something of note: I’ve noticed lately that many smaller goalies (and women goalies) wear the CCM E-Flex line of pads. As seen in the picture for this post, I have a set (my very first set of pads) that I replaced with my Premieres when I thought I wanted a stiffer pad with greater rebound and more five-hole coverage. After realizing that smaller goalies tend to enjoy the flexibility of the hybrid pads, I thought why not give it a shot and bring the OG pads to a lesson. Here are my thoughts from today:
My E-Flexes are a 31+1 pad, as are my Premieres. However, the Premieres have a much steeper boot angle which essentially makes them a 32+1, and they fit perfectly. That being said, getting back in my old pads I noticed I wasn’t landing quite in the right spot on the knee block which caused some discomfort during the lesson. I also realized after warmup that I had to really loosen the straps on the pads because unlike my Premieres, these pads need to be lose to avoid rotational issues.
Once the pads were loosened and I got into the thick of the lesson, I noticed something: I moved with such ease around the crease, had greater feeling for the puck, and had much better rebound control. All things I’ve never really experienced in my Premieres. My slides became effortless in the E-Flexes, so much so, the mechanics became unconscious and instead of thinking about how to position my leg to get the best slide with the most distance, I just did it. It was a pretty amazing feeling, especially since power pushes have been a struggle for me since the beginning of my goalie career.
In short, I think I’m an E-Flex girl now. Given my style of play, and my size, I think the more flexible pad really suits me. I’m not ready to give up on my Premieres just yet, as they are still in very good condition (and it also feels like I’m cheating on them a little bit), but when it does come time for my next pads, I think we all know what I’ll go with (in 32+1, though, the 31+1 is simply too short.)