How to Wear Ice Hockey Socks

Written by timdowdall
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How to Wear Ice Hockey Socks
Hockey equipment can initially be a confusing part of the game. (ice hockey image by Inhumane Productions from

For any hockey beginner, adjusting to the equipment and learning how to put it on (and in what order) can be more complicated than it looks. The socks may appear complicated, but once you know how to do it they become quite easy to put on. Hockey socks serve two purposes. They are meant to hold the shin guards in place and to look good by carrying the team colours of the jersey through the rest of the uniform.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Shin guards
  • Hockey socks
  • Hockey trousers
  • Skates

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    Dressing for the Game

  1. 1

    Put on a jock or gill strap (depending on whether you are male or female) and/or a garter. The garter's role is to hold up the hockey socks, and they will fall (or, at the very least, be uncomfortable) without one. Many companies make a combination jock/gill and garter, which resembles a regular jock/gill with four straps hanging down that attach to the socks. Some jocks/gills come as shorts with Velcro around the bottom to attach the socks. There are many varieties available.

  2. 2

    Put shin guards in place over top of your socks (regular, everyday socks, not hockey socks), ensuring they fit comfortably from the knee with the base resting on top of your foot. It's important that your shin guards fit properly in order for them to offer the protection they are meant to provide.

  3. 3

    Slide socks on over top of the shin guards. It is important that you don't have your skates on yet. Although the wide socks will usually fit over your skates, the blade will pull and tear at the socks. Over time, the wear and tear will add up and your socks won't last long at all.

  4. 4

    Clip the garter onto the top of the socks, ensuring that the socks fit tight enough and still reach the bottom of the shin guards. The clips should attach at the outside of the thigh, with one toward the front and one toward the back of each leg.

  5. 5

    Tape the socks in place using clear sock tape. This will provide additional stabilisation to the shin guards and ensure they don't swivel out of place on you leg. Wrap one piece of tape around the sock just above the bottom of the shin guards and another just below the knee.

  6. 6

    Slide hockey trousers on over the top of the socks. The bottom of the trousers should reach the top of the knee, and the socks should rise up slightly higher, usually to mid-thigh. Put your skates on and leave the base of the shin pads underneath the tongue of the skates.

Tips and warnings

  • Socks with a few holes will still work well, as long as the holes aren't extensive enough to affect the socks' ability to hold the shin guards in place.

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