Menu

The 8 Best Hockey Elbow Pads of 2019

We here at Going Bar Down have suffered our share of elbow injuries due to lousy elbow pads, or pads sliding up and not protecting properly when hitting the ice.  This one hits close to come for us so we focused on reviewing and finding you some exceptional choices to protect your elbows.  Having bursitis all season long is not a fun proposition, and we are here to prevent that.  Our top pick to protect your elbows are the Bauer Vapor 1X Lite.  These elbow pads will stay snug and not get jolted out of place, while at the same time being super light weight and not limiting your mobility.  If you want to buy a pair of elbow pads and never think about them again, this is your set.

If you’re curious about some top value shoulder pads to strap on over your elbow pads, click on our link to check our reviews out!

Our Pick

Best Hockey Elbow Pad

A tapered, snug fit sure to protect you from hits and falls, all in a lightweight package, a home run in elbow protection.

At this point you already know what the 1X is about.  Lightweight, protective, and fits securely, this elbow pad will keep you safe and injury free game in and game out.  You will barely notice them and they won’t interfere with the wrist cuff of your hockey gloves either.  See what real life reviewers had to say about them after leaving a 5 star review – 

Runner-Up

Best CCM Elbow Pad

CCM’s newJetspeed FT1 elbow pad has a molded PE foam cap to dissipate energy, and maintains great mobility with its multi strap system!

The Jetspeed finishes second on our list, but not by much.  CCM has focused on many things Bauer does well – Mobility, great protection, and a quick drying technology.  They also created a three piece design to even more so help with mobility and ensure you hardly even notice you are wearing them – until they save you from a painful fall!

Protection On A Budget

Best Budget Elbow Pad

Warrior’s mid-line Alpha elbow pad borrows some great features from the top of the line Alpha QX but comes in at a much lower price!

Borrowing lots of tech from its bigger brother the Alpha QX, the Warrior Alpha Pro QX lacks a little bit of the tapered fit and doesn’t quite have the advanced drying tech featured in the Alpha QX.  Other than that, these elbow pads still offer great protection at a price that keeps more money in your wallet.

Our Recommendations

Great protection and Great Fit

CCM’s newJetspeed FT1 elbow pad has a molded PE foam cap to dissipate energy, and maintains great mobility with its multi strap system

Buying Options

Unbeatable Elbow Protection

A tapered, snug fit sure to protect you from hits and falls, all in a lightweight package.  A home run in the elbow protection department

Buying Options

A Great Elbow Pad At A Great Price

Warrior’s mid-line Alpha elbow pad borrows some great features from the top of the line Alpha QX but comes in at a much lower price

Buying Options

Our Research and Findings

Hockey elbow pads are an important piece of equipment that protects the elbows from contact with the ice, boards, sticks, and pucks. The size and fit of the elbow pad is different for every player and their personal preference, most importantly it shouldn’t be able to move around during player.  These little protective pieces slide right under your shoulder pads bicep protector, and you don’t really think about them often but trust me when you hit your elbow on the ice and your elbow pads aren’t in the right place, you’ll be feeling it for weeks. Read on for reviews that break down everything you need to know like manufacturers specs, strengths of the equipment, possible weaknesses, and overall consumer value.

We will be reviewing the best senior hockey elbow pads from all the major brands including CCM, Bauer, and Warrior to help you get peak performance and go bar down all the time. We will layout the shin pads and rank them for durability, fit, weight, and cost. We feel these are the best hockey elbow pads on the market and our goal is to help you make the best choice for your game.

At the bottom of our article we have a guide on hockey elbow pad sizing and buying basics for all players.

Directly below is our comparison table of all 8 hockey elbow pads.  Click on the product name to jump to the review, or click the flag to find the best price in your country!

This Warrior elbow pad is designed for big time protection from contact. 

Our Rating:

4.5/5

US / CA Best Prices

Bauers top model designed more for protection and rough players than mobility and weight.

Our Rating:

4.5/5

US / CA Best Prices

A durable option that is right in between the Supreme and Vapor for protection and mobility.

Our Rating:

4.3/5

US / CA Best Prices

An excellent hockey elbow pad that is a bit lighter and flexible than the QX model.

Our Rating:

4/5

US / CA Best Prices

A perfect elbow pad for those who want a lighter, cheaper option that gets the job done.

Our Rating:

4/5

US / CA Best Prices

A great value deal on the X900 as it has excellent protection and comfortable fit.

Our Rating:

4/5

US / CA Best Prices

The Best Hockey Elbow Pads of 2019

1. Bauer Vapor 1X Lite - Best Overall Hockey Elbow Pad

Specifications and Features:

  • Tapered Fit – The Bauer Vapor 1X Lite hockey elbow pad uses a one-piece tapered fit which enhances mobility and comfort.
  • Aerolite Technology – The elbow cap on the pads is made from Aerolite 2.0 materials, a proprietary material that is lightweight and ultra protective.
  • 37.5 Liner – Designed by Bauer and featured in a number of their protective productions to help deal with sweat and odor in your gear.

Advantages:

  • Excellent Mobility – The one piece design on these Bauer elbow pads really increases your range of motion and mobility when handling the puck.
  • Lightweight Protection –  Bauer incorporated Aerolite technology which has really brought these elbow pads to another level, they’re almost weightless but do an excellent job protecting against any impacts.
  • Bicep Protection – The bicep protector is made with Hyperlite foam protection and 37.5 liner technology for a comfortable fit.

Disadvantages:

This is the top Bauer hockey elbow pad so its at the high end of the price range, but the lightweight protection is best in class.

BOTTOM LINE:

This is one of the best hockey elbow pads you can buy in 2019, and until someone else steps up and knocks it out of the park with a lighter, more mobile elbow pad they will stay here. Mobility and protection are number one in these hockey elbow pads, as the one piece design and tapered fit give the best of both worlds. The 37.5 liner and hyper lite foam give the bicep protectors a lightweight and comfortable fit that won’t move around during the game. All in all, great value and durability with Bauer’s best selling elbow pad. 


2. CCM Jetspeed FT1 - Best Protection Hockey Elbow Pad

Specifications and Features:

  • Three Piece Design – CCM features a three piece design with this years Jetspeed FT1 elbow pad for increased mobility 
  • Molded PE Foam Cap – A molded PE foam cap with JDP technology dissipates the energy from impact throughout the elbow pad away from the point of contact.
  • Rocketframe Bicep Protector – CCM uses their rocketframe composite technology for pro-level protection on the bicep

Advantages:

  • Superior Protection – The CCM Jetspeet FT1 hockey elbow pad uses composite technology to enhance protection as well as force dissipating foams to keep the elbow pads lightweight.
  • Superior Mobility –  The three piece design along with the multi-strap system ensures a comfortable fit for all players with excellent mobility handling the puck.
  • Quick Drying Technology – CCM utilized a closed cell foam design which absorbs less sweat keeping you cool and your elbow pads dry. 

Disadvantages:

I’m personally used to a two piece elbow pad design so this took a skate to get used to, but you really feel the added flexibility when shooting and handling the puck.

BOTTOM LINE:

Both Bauer and CCM have focused on increased mobility and lightweight protection in their new top of the line elbow pads. The CCM Jetspeed line is always build to be lightweight, and the use of closed cell foams in the design to prevent water logging goes a long way to keeping you quick all game long. The three piece design really helps controlling the puck and getting off that quick release without feeling your elbow pads getting in the way. Overall, a great value product that offers you excellent performance and long lasting durability. 


3. Warrior Alpha QX - Best Mobility Elbow Pad

Specifications and Features:

  • Quick strike Technology – An elbow pad designed like you’re in the pros focused on mobility, protection, and fit.
  • Smartcap Elbow Pad – These elbow pads use Smartcap technology with 2-way protection for both you and the opposing player.
  • Warrior FNC Liner – Warrior has used a strike yellow liner with Polygeine protection to fight odors and increase ventilation.

Advantages:

  • Serious Protection –  Warrior protective gear is meant for one thing, players that like a physical game and need serious protection because they push their bodies to the limit.
  • Lightweight Construction – In addition to providing top of hte line protection, Warrior has used lightweight materials throughout so these elbow pads won’t slow you down either.
  • Anatomical Fit – These elbow pads might look beefy for hard hitting players, but the actual fit is extremely close to the body which gives them a great feel for puck handling.

Disadvantages:

As I said earlier, these offer serious protection so they aren’t the lightest and sleekest model you can buy but they will be sure to keep you from getting injured.

BOTTOM LINE:

Warrior always delivers on the protective gear, with another great model with top end protection in the Alpha QX elbow pads. The thing that really surprised me about these elbow pads is how lightweight and mobile they are, even though they look bulkier than some of the other models discussed here. They really don’t hold you back at all when shooting or handling the puck, and in my opinion these are the best elbow pads for defenseman. 


4. Bauer Supreme 1S - Best 2018 Model Elbow Pad

Specifications and Features:

  • Flexorb Elbow Joint – Interior elbow joint constructed with Flexorb revolutionary technology for enhanced mobility
  • Curv Composite with Powerlite – This Bauer elbow pad has an injected cap of Curv composite with Powerlite materials for improved protection.
  • Ventilated 37.5 Liner – Bauer designed the elbow pad liner with an integrated sleeve lock liner with odor-resistant treatment.

Advantages:

  • Cool Ventilation – The Bauer Supreme 1S really focused on keeping you cool and dry during the game, with enhanced ventilation features to improve airflow. 
  • Premium Protection – This is the heaviest model of the Bauer elbow pads, with increased protection and injected caps for superior impact resistance.
  • Comfortable Fit – The sleeve locking liner with 37.5 technology really stands out in these elbow pads, as the have an anatomical fit and the liner helps ensure your elbow doesn’t move around during the game. 

Disadvantages:

These aren’t as sleek and mobile as other Bauer elbow pads, but they offer the highest level of protection the Bauer brand offers.

BOTTOM LINE:

This is an excellent elbow pad especially for players who focus on a physical game and want to make a different with their body. Even if you’re playing recreational hockey these will ensure you aren’t nursing a bruised elbow for weeks. These offer great value as they aren’t as expensive as other Bauer models but offer the same great protection. The mobility and weight may not be with the Vapor 1X or the Jetspeed FT1 but the durability and protection is excellent.


5. Bauer Nexus 2N

Specifications and Features:

  • Molded Elbow Cap – Molded cap combined with IX foam protection for a one piece fit.
  • Thermo Max Liner – An innovative liner that reduces head generation with thermo max technology 
  • Bicep Protection – Bicep protection with a floating protective Vent Armor insert

Advantages:

  • Great protective coverage – The Bauer Nexus 2N elbow pads deliver a comfortable fit that provides full coverage protection where you need it most.
  • Cooling Liner –  Bauers Thermo max technology really make a difference keeping you cool throughout the game. 
  • Lightweight Design – The Bauer Nexus 2N are almost minimalistic in their design as they offer a simple, lightweight elbow pad. 

Disadvantages:

Since this is a pretty simple design you’re not getting the top of the line protection but the Bauer Nexus 2N elbow pads will definitely get the job done.  

BOTTOM LINE:

The Bauer Nexus 2N elbow pads aren’t flashy but they’re a solid value choice. Depending on the style of game you play and the competitiveness you don’t always need to go for the best elbow pad every single year. These a great option if you’re looking for a lightweight elbow pad or if you’re just playing recreationally. 


6. Warrior Alpha QX Pro - The Top Budget Friendly Elbow Pad

Specifications and Features:

  • Quick strike Technology – An elbow pad designed like you’re in the pros focused on mobility, protection, and fit.
  • Slash and Bicep Guards – Molded slash and bicep protection for enhanced protective coverage.
  • Warrior FNC Liner – Warrior has used a strike yellow liner with Polygeine protection to fight odors and increase ventilation.

Advantages:

  • Lightweight Design – This elbow pad feels like its molded to your arm with its lightweight and simple 3 strap design.
  • Quick Drying Liner-  The strike yellow liner gets rid of sweat and moisture to keep you cool all game. 
  • Comfortable Fit – A classic fitting elbow pad that doesn’t go too crazy on the bicep protection.

Disadvantages:

  • These elbow pads are last years model for Warrior so they don’t have some of the upgrades but are still a great value pick. 

BOTTOM LINE:

This is a versatile elbow pad that is a great fit for every style of player. A great balance between protection and lightweight design make the Warrior QX Pro elbow pads a solid choice at a great price point. 


7. CCM Jetspeed FT390

Specifications and Features:

  • Lightweight Construction – A 3-piece design with a dryfoam liner that prevents absorption of sweat.
  • Forearm Protection – These CCM elbow pads go with a molded PE foam further down the elbow pad for extended protection coverage. 
  • Arched Bicep Strap – A newly designed bicep strap keeps the molded PE shell firmly along the arm.

Advantages:

  • Tight Fit – The CCM Jetspeed FT1 elbow pads offer a great anatomical fit with a three strap system for a snug fit. 
  • Enhanced Mobility – The FT390 elbow pads offer a great range of motion without any restriction.

Disadvantages:

  • If you like a looser more classic fitting elbow pad, the CCM Jetpsed FT390 will take a bit of getting used to. 

BOTTOM LINE:

Overall, you can’t go wrong with the Jetspeed FT390, sure its not the top of the line model but it hits the mark in every category. It has a little bit of a tighter fit and doesn’t have the newest technology but the overall performance is superb. These are the perfect elbow pads for players at all levels  but don’t want to break the bank for the newest model.


8. Bauer Vapor X800 - Lightest Elbow Pad

Specifications and Features:

  • Tapered Fit –  Bauers X900 elbow pads go with a 2 piece construction and tapered fit.
  • Hyperlite Foam – A molded elbow cap with hyperlite foam gives you lightweight protection.
  • Thermo Max Liner – An innovative liner that reduces head generation with thermo max technology 

Advantages:

  • Simple Design – These Bauer elbow pads don’t try to do too much on the design and just give you a lightweight product.
  • Great Mobility – These elbow pads have a two piece design with a low bicep protector for increased mobility.
  • Featherlite Protection – The X800 elbow pads just get the job done on the protection side, nothing fancy just the necessities.

Disadvantages:

  • These elbow pads don’t have the greatest coverage on the protection side but if you’re not playing in a league with a ton of slashing these will be perfect.

BOTTOM LINE:

The Bauer X800 elbow pad is a great value option and it really checks the boxes in all categories. Its going to give you great protection, solid mobility, and long lasting durability. These aren’t the flashiest elbow pads you could buy but they offer great value.

Hockey Elbow Pad Sizing

How To Measure For Your Hockey Elbow Pads

If you’re buying elbow pads online, its extremely important you measure the length you need correctly. Thankfully, most manufacturers have very similar specs on their product sizing, so the guide below should help you size them perfectly!

1.  Measure from the middle of your bicep to the pit of your elbow.  The middle of your bicep is where your shoulder pad bicep protector ends, so you need to get this right to make sure you don’t have any large gaps in protection

2. Measure from your elbow to where your glove cuff starts.  This is the second part of the measurements needed.

3. Add up your bicep to elbow and elbow to glove cuff distances, and you will now have distances that align with our charts below to pick your size!

Senior Hockey Elbow Pad Sizing

What follows is based off Bauer and CCM sizing guides for senior hockey elbow pads.  These measurements vary slightly from manufacturer to manufacturer, but this table should be quite accurate.  Just make sure you take into account your overall height as well as the measurements listed above as they are the two the most important variables to sizing things properly.

                                       Senior Hockey Elbow Pad Sizing Chart
Elbow Pad SizeWeightMid Bicep to Glove Cuff (in)Height (ft)
Small120 – 16012 – 13″5’5″ – 5’9″
Medium140 – 18013 – 14″5’7″ – 5’11”
Large160 – 20014 – 15″5’9″ – 6’1″
X-Large200 +15 – 16″5’11” – 6’3″

Junior Hockey Elbow Pad Sizing

When sizing for a Junior player, you need to remember Senior elbow pads are also an option if none of the Junior sizes work out.  Junior elbow pads are recommended for players aged 8 – 14 years old. It is important to check the fitment of your childs elbow pads to make sure they haven’t outgrown them and they still fit properly.

                                        Junior Hockey Elbow Pad Sizing Chart
   Elbow Pad Size           AgeMid Bicep to Glove Cuff (in)     Height (ft)
Small8 – 119 – 10″4’3″ – 4’8″
Medium10 – 1210 – 11″4’7″ – 5’1″
Large11 – 1411 – 12″4’11” – 5’4″

Youth Hockey Elbow Guard Sizing

Youth elbow pads are for players just starting to learn, typically from the ages of 4 to 9 years old.  This range is an estimate so don’t buy elbow pads strictly on our age range, but do the bicep to glove cuff measurements to be sure.   If your child is brand new to the game it’s ok to have the elbow pads be a bit big, but not big enough that they can slip off.  Too small on the other hand could leave your child open to injury so we always advise to err on the larger size, as long as the pad still fits snugly on your child’s arm. 

                                        Youth Hockey Elbow Pad Sizing Chart
Elbow Pad Size          Age Mid Bicep to Glove Cuff                  (in)            Height (ft)
X-Small 3-6 6 – 7 3’0″ – 3’10”
Small 4-7 7 – 8 3’3″ – 4’1″
Medium 5 – 8 7.5 – 8.5 3’7″ – 4’4″
Large 6-9 8 – 9 3’9″ – 4’7″

Conclusion

We have talked about some of the best hockey elbow pads on the market today, and really it’s all about finding the most comfortable fit for your game. Trust me, there is nothing more annoying as a player than your elbow pads affecting the way you shoot or handle the puck. This is an underrated piece of equipment but it really directly impacts every single pass or shot you take, so you can’t take this choice lightly. My personal favorite is the Bauer Vapor 1X Lite, as these elbow pads are extremely comfortable and offers a great lightweight anatomical fit for even better mobility. If anyone has an opinion or question on any of the elbow pads I have talked about, we’d love to hear from you. 

Check out some of our other reviews while you are here.  If you are interested in top level protection, check out our helmet reviews and find the lightest hockey helmet to match your new lightweight elbow pads!

Going Bar Down

Sign up for our weekly newsletter that will include the best deals from top stores, and updates from goingbardown.com

All email members will qualify for our monthly giveaway! This months giveaway is a stick grip from BUTTENDZ!