The 10 Best Soccer Shin Guards: Everything You Need To Know

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Are you looking to push your soccer potential to new heights? Then perhaps it’s time to consider the shin guards you wear. 

In this article, we will explore 10 of the best soccer shin guards, things to consider when choosing shin guards, why they are so important, as well as some common questions. 

Our Top 10 Soccer Shin Guards

With so many choices out there, it can be confusing when looking to buy new shin guards, so here are our 10 favorites, which suit all budgets, players, and styles!

1. Franklin Sports Shin Guards

Franklin Sports Shin Guards

Franklin Sports did a fantastic job creating nice-looking shin guards at an affordable price.

They are designed with an abrasion-resistant outer shell, which provides great protection.

These lightweight shin guards come with a foam-cushioned interior, which makes them comfortable to wear.

The dual-velcro straps help to give a comfortable and secure fit. However, some users have complained about the velcro scraping their skin. 

Although Franklin mentions that these shin guards are suitable for kids and adults, we have found the design doesn’t provide the best experience for taller players and those with large calves. 

Overall, the price tag and level of protection provided by these shin guards have us giving them a thumbs up. 

What we like

  • Abrasion-resistant technology for better protection.
  • Foam-cushioned interior for comfort.
  • Affordable price tag.

What we don’t like

  • The narrow design makes it uncomfortable for people with larger calves.

2. Nike Mercurial Lite Shin Guards

Nike Mercurial Lite Shin Guards

The Nike Mercurial Lite shin guards have a subtle design with comfortable interior cushioning. They are designed to be lightweight and slip in underneath your socks.

The shin guards are made with breathable holes, so they help to keep you cool. They have a left-and-right-leg specific design, which creates even more comfort for the user.

When placed under your socks, they generally stay in place. Nike has also included sleeves that can be used to keep the shin guards in place. 

The smaller design means that these shin guards do not provide the best protection for taller players. If you are looking for a child-friendly option, then these are great shin guards for you.

What we like

  • Attractive design.
  • Comfortable experience.
  • Left-and-right-leg specific design.

What we don’t like

  • Smaller design limits protection for taller players.

3. Nike J Soccer Shin Guards

Nike J Soccer Shin Guards

The Nike J Guards were designed for people who don’t like wearing shin guards.

They are lightweight and comfortable, and their price tag also makes them a good option to use as a ‘2nd pair’ for practice when you aren’t expecting too many heavy tackles. 

In terms of protection, we don’t think the Nike J Guards are a good option for younger players due to their material.

The shin guard’s outer layer is a thin plastic layer backed by an inner layer of foam. Not the best if you are trying to protect a young child from injuries.

However, these shin guards offer a super comfortable experience for the user.

They have similar ventilation to the Nike Mercurial Lite, and the minimalist, flexible design makes them hardly noticeable. They are, however, on the smaller side and don’t cover the entire shin area.

What we like

  • Super lightweight and comfortable.
  • Great ventilation.
  • Affordable price tag.

What we don’t like

  • Not the best option for younger players.
  • Minimal protection for the player.

4. Mitre Aircell Carbon slip Shin Guards

Mitre Aircell Carbon slip Shin Guards

The Mitre Aircell Carbon shin guards provide plenty of protection. The Aircell technology also provides incredible breathability, keeping your legs cool.

They are super lightweight, giving you a comfortable, unrestricted experience. 

These shin guards are also CE and SATRA tested – meaning they are designed and certified to be used at any game level.

Although they are well-designed and safe, some users have expressed that they do not offer enough cover along the shin.

There have also been durability complaints, with some users saying that they needed replacing within just 3 months of purchase. 

However, we believe their lightweight and breathable design, coupled with the safety certifications, make these a great option for players of all levels.

What we like

  • Great in hot weather.
  • Lightweight design.
  • Safety certification makes them appropriate for all levels of the game.

What we don’t like

  • Durability issues.

5. G-Form Pro-S Elite Shin Guards

G-Form Pro-S Elite Shin Guards

These shin guards come in at a slightly higher price than the others, but they certainly make up for it with the quality they provide.

The SmartFlex technology used in the shin guards means they are flexible and soft in their normal state, but they harden on impact. 

The sleeve-like design of these shin guards makes them comfortable, offering compression around the calves. This design also keeps them in place.

Although they are easy to slip on, some users have found them difficult to take off. Additionally, the sleeve-like design has made it tricky for some to choose the correct size, with some saying they are too tight.

If you like the idea of playing with compression-like shin guards and you have some money to spend, then these are the shin guards for you!

What we like

  • SmartFlex technology offers protection and comfort.
  • Sleeve-like design keeps them in place.
  • Lightweight and comfortable.

What we don’t like

  • More expensive than most shin guards. 
  • Can be difficult to remove.

6. Adidas Tiro League Shin Guards

Adidas Tiro League Shin Guards

The Adidas Tiro League shin guards offer that classic Adidas look with plenty of protection. They are designed to slip on and come with retaining sleeves. 

They have a strong outer shell and an EVA-backed inner, which absorbs some of the harder tackles.

This sturdy design has led to most users approving the protection the Tiro League shin guards offer. 

The Tiro League sizing is on the smaller side, which has led to several users mentioning that they have found it difficult to purchase the correct size on the first try.

If you like shin guards of a simple style, you can’t go wrong with the Tiro League shin guards.

What we like

  • Retaining sleeves keep the shin guards in place.
  • A hard outer shell and EVA-backed inner offer good protection.

What we don’t like

  • The shin guards’ size makes it tricky to get the perfect fit.

7. Vizari Malaga Soccer Shin Guards 

Vizari Malaga Soccer Shin Guards

Vizari is probably one of the lesser-known soccer brands out there. However, don’t let this discourage you from these shin guards.

The Vizari Malaga shin guards are amongst the most popular available on Amazon.

The Vizari Malaga shin guards are probably better suited to younger soccer players who require more protection.

Made with a combination of lightweight and durable materials, the Vizari Malagas offers great protection.

Unlike several other modern shin guards, the Vizari Malaga shin guards come with foam-padded ankle protection. They also come in various colors, including pink, green, and blue.

The design of the shin guards offers optimal protection, covering the entire shin area. Some users have mentioned that these shin guards come up too high along the shin, creating discomfort around the knee.

Overall, the Vizari Malaga shin guards offer more than their price tag would lead you to believe. These are great options for young soccer players seeking extra protection.

What we like

  • Offers good protection.
  • Comes with ankle support.

What we don’t like

  • The length has created discomfort for some users around the knee.

8. G-Form Pro-S Vento Shin Guards 

G-Form Pro-S Vento Shin Guards

The Pro-S Vento shin guards upgrade the previously mentioned Pro-S Elite shin guards.

The newer design offers the same SmartFlex technology, which hardens on impact but is flexible during play.

This newer design offers a more sculpted design, making it more comfortable than its previous version. 

The shin guards themselves are attractive looking, and they offer the same compression feeling to protect your calves when playing. They also come in various colors, like pink, aqua, and blue. 

They are also designed with specific left-and-right-leg contours, making them a very comfortable fit, although they are definitely on the more expensive end of the scale.

Despite their price tag, they are worth the investment, especially for younger players looking for extra protection.

What we like

  • Fantastic protection.
  • Comfortable with calf protection.

What we don’t like

  • Higher price tag.
  • Difficult to remove when wearing soccer cleats.

9. Adidas X League Shin Guards

Adidas X League Shin Guards

The Adidas X League shin guards are similar to the Tiro League range. The main difference is that the X League shin guards are made with a resin outer shell. This makes them slightly lighter.

The X League comes with compression sleeves, and the shin guards are backed with an EVA lining designed to absorb impact. 

In terms of design, the X League range is designed with a more ‘modern’ feeling versus the Tiro League range. 

However, the problem users seem to face with the X League is the sizing. Some feel the shin guard does not provide enough cover for players and that purchasing the correct size is often difficult. 

Like the Tiro League range, we believe that the Adidas X League is another great pair of shin guards that look fantastic. 

What we like

  • Retaining sleeves keep the shin guards in place.
  • A hard outer shell and EVA-backed inner offer good protection.

What we don’t like

  • The shin guards’ size makes it tricky to get the perfect fit.

10. Nike Charge Shin Guards

Nike Charge Shin Guards

These shin guards have a classic look, and they offer great protection. Nike chose the classic pull-on design, which offers some ankle protection as well. 

Most users have said that the Nike Charge shin guards are comfortable, but a few have complained that the velcro strap can get annoying. 

The foam backing has been designed to fit snugly, creating a comfortable experience. It is also designed to absorb impact.

Overall, there isn’t much wrong to say about these. They are sturdy, nice-looking, and safe. We approve!

What we like

  • Classic look.
  • Pull-on design offers some ankle support.
  • Comfortable experience.

What we don’t like

  • Some users have expressed discomfort caused by the velcro strap.

Checklist for Buying the Best Shin Guards

When choosing your next pair of shin guards, some important factors to consider are:

1. Player Position

It is important that you understand which shin guards match your position. 

If you’re a goalkeeper, you probably won’t experience too much contact, so you should consider a more lightweight option. 

Defenders experience the most contact, so they need the most protection. 

Midfielders should generally look for more all-round shin guards, focusing on protection and flexibility. 

Forwards should be flexible and mobile on the field and consider smaller, lighter options. 

Regardless of your position, make sure they offer you the appropriate amount of protection!

2. Shin guard sizing

Shin guard sizing is not complicated, but it is important that you select the correct size. 

The size of your shin guard is determined by the size of your shin and your height. The taller the player, the longer and wider the shin guard.

It’s also important to remember that each brand uses a different sizing chart for shin guards. 

3. Types of shin guards

There are three different types of shin guards:

  • Slip-in shin guards: Slip-in shin guards are the lightest option of the three and are kept in place by a sleeve provided by the manufacturer or behind the sock. Although this option is the most flexible and allows the most freedom of movement, the slip-in option provides the least protection, so we do not recommend this option for younger players or beginners.
  • Ankle shin guards: Ankle shin guards generally offer the most protection, including around the ankle area. Senior players have expressed that these shin guards can limit their range of movement, but the extra protection is a great option for younger players. 
  • Shin socks: Shin socks slip over your shin area like a pair of socks. They offer more balance, better protection than slip-ins, and more comfort than ankle shin guards. 

All of these types of shin guards have their advantages and their disadvantages, so it is well worth spending a little time working out just what you need from your shin protection so that you can feel confident in your purchase.

4. Safety standards

There are no specific standards that are universally followed by manufacturers. The National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE) provides a standard that all shin guards must be tested according to. There are three main indicators to look for when it comes to safety standards:

  • The EN 13061:2009 is the European Standard for testing shin guards.
  • Some manufacturers use SATRA testing methods.
  • Some shin guards are CE-marked, which means they follow standards described by the EU.

5. Accessories

We know that looking good on the field is important and that shin guards are not always the most attractive gear. There are accessories that you can use to keep your swag alive.

Most manufacturers offer accessories such as lock sleeves, shin guard stays, and shin guard straps. If keeping your appearance is something that matters to you as a player, you should consider these accessories.

The Importance of Shin Guards

We truly believe that shin guards are an important piece of equipment. Here’s why:

Lower The Risk of Injury

Shin guards protect you from the occasional kick from your opponent. Additionally, if you’re wearing the right shin guards, they will stay in place regardless of your movements.

Provides Extra Support

Some shin guards offer you additional support around your joints as they wrap around your ankle or cradle the bottom of your foot. This additional support can help to prevent a serious injury beyond simply covering your shins.

Boost Confidence on Playing Field

On the soccer field, confidence is key, and when you feel safe, and you feel comfortable, you feel confident. This is why shin guards are a vital piece of your soccer kit. 

How to Wear Soccer Shin Guards?

The most important thing is ensuring that your shin guards are the right size and length. Younger players wear shin guards that offer ankle protection; these are pulled over the shin underneath the sock.

These shin guards can be pulled over socks, but generally, leagues require that these be worn underneath socks. The same procedure is generally followed when wearing shin socks.

Slip-in shin guards do exactly that: they slip in underneath the sock. Some players use tape or sleeves to keep the shin guards in place.

We strongly recommend that you put these shin guards on in a way that ensures that they don’t move around when you’re playing.


What size soccer shin guards do I need?

Every manufacturer uses a different sizing chart. Start by measuring the length of your shin and match that to the sizing chart as closely as possible.

Can soccer shin guards be washed?

Yes, you can wash the shin guards. When you purchase your shin guards, check if they are machine washable.

If they are, great! If not, simply fill your sink with water and either dish soap or laundry detergent (avoid harsh chemicals like bleach). Submerge the shin guards and gently scrub off any dirt. 

Are soccer shin guards worn under socks?

Yes! Putting them under socks creates more stability for the shin guards, and it also protects other players from the exposed materials.

What type of shin guards are the best?

The best shin guards are the ones that offer the highest level of comfort and protection.

How do I know what shin guards I need?

The ideal shin guard should cover your shin guard from your ankle to just below the knee.

Are all shin guards the same?

No. Different shin guards offer different levels of comfort and protection. Pay attention to your needs when choosing shin guards. 

How do you keep shin guards from falling down?

Most shin guards come with straps or sleeves that keep them in place. Wearing them correctly underneath your socks will also keep them from falling down. You might want to consider tapes or additional straps if needed.


We hope that this list has provided you with more insight and information regarding your next pair of shin guards. The best shin guards for you are the ones that make you feel comfortable, confident, and safe.

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