Review of OBO ROBO elbow protectors and OBO Senior Knee protectors
by Niclas Franzén Swedish national goalkeeper and goalkeeper for Partille Sport Club
Please excuse my grammatical and spelling errors
This review consist of three parts “First impression”, “Review after testing” and “Pictures”
At first look I was a bit confused with its “weird” design and at first try I thought they were the bulkiest pads I had ever tried BUT then I started to take a closer look at the elbow pads and noticed what I would like to call GENIOUS design! First I started by just adjusting the straps a bit and this made it fit nicer then I removed the “elbowpit”/forearm/bicep protection and I was in love basically all the bulk was gone and they fitted better with my SP gloves especially the right one and when I tried to remove the ground/inner protection the pad became even better!
I’m wearing them around the house for the moment to get used to the feeling (I have not used elbow protection for a long time so it’s a bit odd for me at first) without having a go with them in goal yet I really think OBO have designed a product that able to catch a really really wide audience. When using all protection it’s like a full arm guard and when removing the first pad it becomes a protective elbow protector and when taking the last part away it becomes a super flexible elbow protector (of course I understand that protection will not be as good but for me who is used to not having anything at all its still much better than nothing. I feel that the elbow bone is well protected and so is the forearm I think it will be great for PCs when going down because the most brittle parts of the arm is protected it’s just like I want it
The only slight downside with the pad is that I don’t think some of the elastics is tight enough when removing all the extra protection but it’s a easy fix with the good old sewing machine and maybe it says more about the size of my biceps than the product itself 😉
as for the kneepads they don’t hinder the movement to bad actually and after wearing them for a while they started to get the shape of my leg however I can’t get used to the straps at the back of my knee because of the straps but it might not be a issue when wearing long socks also I have yet to see how they fit with my girdle.
Review after testing
First of all I want to say FINALLY a elbow protector that’s designed for fieldhockey instead of a ice hockey elbow protector sold as a fieldhockey one.
After testing the elbow pads for one and a half month I feel I can give the pads a fair review after breaking them in properly. I like these elbow pads a lot and I they are certainly the best I have ever tried I like the idea that it’s possible to remove/add protection to make them fit the needs of the user. One might like to have full protection for training but just wants to wear the “shell” for games, personally I’m extremely sensitive when it comes to bulk and for over two years I have played “dutch” and I can honestly say that these elbow pads are the only reason I have even considered moving back to joint protection. With all protection they act like a small version of the full arm guards (a pair of full arms that fits the sp RHP much better than the actual full arms) with just the inner protection added you get added protection against the ground and also against balls that hits the elbow bone. Lastly with just the “shell” you get a good hard shell with some soft damping on the inside which is the way I use them I feel it gives me the best mix of protection and flexibility the full lower arm is protection and the elbow bone which are the pars of the arm I feel the need to protect. I lent the elbow protectors to another goalkeeper in my club who normally are using full arm protection and he was impressed by the flexibility and he still felt just as confident as when he use his full arm protection so I really do believe they fit all goalkeepers from the ones who loves playing “dutch” to the ones who swears by their full arm protection it might also be a good way if you want to go down from full arm protection to more flexible protection as you can remove the extra protection when you feel confident to do so.
I would say no matter how you use them the protection is still great both against the ground and against balls the hard plastic panels combined with the soft inner makes a perfect combination.
When I was testing these knee protectors I never got hit so I can’t comment on the protection but I was actually surprised how flexible the kneepads were after breaking them in, I would say that they don’t hinder my movement a bit and they fitted well both with my old OBO girdle as well as the newer model so that was not really a problem. They also managed to stay in place fairly well but could move a little after making several saves in a row but it was an easy fix as soon as the ball left the circle. Personally I have had a hard time adjusting to the feel of having something around my joint and even if it does not hinder me it’s a mental block to me so personally I’m not a huge fan of these. However I would have loved these as a junior when I got hit more on my knees and I could see why goalies who slide a lot would like these but these are really for everyone because we all get forced to do some more or less “ugly saves” from time to time (I have even heard a rumor the these kneepads were the reason Ali McGregor could play on after getting hit on the knee during the Olympics). I also lent the knee pads to the same keeper in my club who got to try the elbow pads and as I write he still have not given them back to me he just loves them (mental note I have to buy a pair for him when he has his birthday so I can keep mine for myself).
I think some goalkeepers will absolutely love them and some would hate them me myself is somewhere between these two camps I can’t say I love them but I can’t say I hate them either because after all it’s a good product who are going to give many keepers out there a little more confidence to know that even if they give the little extra during the match they will know for sure that they will be able to go to work Monday morning because let’s face it most of us got work on the side of hockey.
Pictures and explanation
Picture these are the parts of the elbow protector
Elbow protector with all parts
Elbow protector on arm with SP right hand protector
Elbow protector with just the “shell” no added protection
Elbow protector without any extra protection on arm with SP right hand protector
I hope people will find this review helpful and that it has given you a better idea of these great new OBO products.
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.