These shin guards from Parker Athletic Products don't fit the mold of the typical protective device. To make them, Parker adapted fiberglass technology similar to that used to shape casts around broken bones. The company offers custom-fit soccer shin guards for adults ($28.95) and kids ($14.95). Using similar technology, Parker also makes ankle and forearm guards for field and ice hockey, lacrosse and baseball.
Flat and soft as a sponge when dry, the guards conform to the shape of the shin and begin to harden when wet. A gauzelike wrap is provided to hold the guards in place while they set. In 20 minutes they are shaped permanently, and they're machine washable. Tests conducted by independent labs have shown that this type of shin guard offers better protection against injuries than its less sculpted counterparts do. So why not cast a pair now, rather than risk needing a cast later?