When purchasing ringette equipment, consider these two important details:
- Make certain the player is adequately protected and 2) be sure the fitting allows freedom of movement so the player can properly perform the necessary skills; the player will be more comfortable and will better enjoy the game.
- A complete set of ringette equipment can be purchased for a relatively reasonable cost. Shop around for the best values: you do not need to buy the most expensive equipment. For example, the Nepean Minor Hockey Association usually holds an equipment sale in early September at the Nepean Sportsplex. There are also many discount sports stores in the National Capital Region that buy and sell used equipment. Just keep in mind that the equipment must fit properly to provide maximum protection.
- Helmet - CSA Approved. One of your most important purchases: only a CSA approved helmet is allowed and it must be sized at the time of purchase to fit properly. The chin strap must always be fastened.
- Facial protector (i.e. face mask) - CSA Approved Type 5 or Type 6.
- There are specific combinations of CSA certified helmets and facial protectors that are permissible in Ringette. Please check these out to ensure you have the correct combination!!
- Elbow pads (the same type as used in Hockey). Must be properly fitted so that they do not slide. Measure the length between the shoulder and the cuff of the glove and match the player's measurement size to the size of the elbow pad in inches. When fastened securely, there should be no gap between the pad and either the biceps extension of the shoulder pad or the cuff of the glove. Players who wear a short cuff styled glove should choose the longer model of the elbow pad.
- Gloves (the same type as used in Hockey). Check for proper fit, with good finger and hand mobility.
- Ringette pants: with a Ringette girdle OR Hockey pants: with Hockey socks and straps/tape to hold socks up
- Pelvic protection ("Jill Strap") if wearing Hockey pants, or not part of Ringette girdle
- Shin guards Check for proper length so they protect the knee and shin completely: shin guards are best fitted while the player is sitting. To fit properly, measure from the centre of the knee cap to the top of the skate boot and match the player's shin measurement to the size of the shin guard. Shin guards should be secured with proper shin guard straps.
- Skates (the same type as used in Hockey) The other most important purchase: skates that will fit the player today, with no more than 1/2" allowed for growth. Ensure that there is adequate protection in the ankle, toe and instep areas. Improperly fitted skates will hamper the player's ability to skate.
- BNQ Neck Guard regular or with collar
- Sweater: two are provided by the NRA for games; players should have (at least) one for practices (a black and a white would be a good idea)
- Ringette stick (see below)
- Shoulder pads/chest protector - this is, however, highly recommended for older players. Adjust to fit the individual at the time of purchase. Measure the player's chest just below the arm pits and match the player's chest measurement to the shoulder pad size in inches. A fiber cap is extremely important in preventing shoulder separations and should extend to the tip of the shoulder.
- Mouth guard: single or double. Must be worn for all on-ice events, including practices, league games, tournaments and provincials.
FOR THE GOALKEEPER
Special equipment is necessary for the goalkeeper, such as: gloves (catching and stick), chest and stomach protector, goalie skates (with protective shell), leg pads, shoulder and arm protectors. The goaltender's equipment is especially important, so seek advice from a knowledgeable source.
The playing end of a Ringette stick consists of the lower one-third of the total length of the player's stick (goal stick excluded) as measured from the playing tip upwards towards the butt end.
- The player's stick must have both ends smooth (not cracked nor splintered), with no added tape within the playing end of the stick. Width faces of the stick must form two straight parallel lines from end to end. Thickness faces must form two straight parallel lines, except at the playing end.
- The minimum thickness at the tip of the playing end must not be less than 12 mm., and the taper length must not be more than 250 mm. The tip of the playing end must be at 90° to the parallel portion of the thickness faces. Thickness faces must also form two straight parallel lines except at the playing end which, if tapered, must be symmetrical and formed of smooth straight faces.
- The stick may be made of wood, plastic, or aluminum, and/or any other material approved by Ringette Canada.
- The width of the shaft must not be less than 27 mm. nor more than 35 mm. The thickness of the shaft must not be less than 17.5 mm. nor more than 25 mm.
- Maximum length of the stick is from the ice up to the height of the underarm. The measurement is to be taken while the arm is extended at 90° to the body while the player is standing on skates. VERY IMPORTANT: While the aforementioned is the maximum length for the stick allowed by the rules, the recommended length is much shorter. The top of the stick should be level with the players sternum when on skates. Playing with a stick longer than the recommended length significantly compromised the players ability to stab, reduces the leverage she has when battling for the ring and make it more difficult to protect the ring from opposing players. If parents are reluctant to cut an expensive stick, we recommend buying a cheap stick and cutting it to the correct length.
- A bit of history trivia: players' positions used to be denoted by the colour of their stick - defence players used red sticks, forwards used blue sticks, and the centres' sticks were white.
SOME TIPS AND COMMENTS
- Keep your equipment DRY! This is the most important thing you can do to extend the life of your ringette equipment. Particular attention should be placed on skates and gloves as these items receive the most damage from excess moisture.
- Use skate guards only when transporting your skates. Most skate guards have a tendency to collect moisture which can cause your skate blades to rust.
- To prevent rust build-up in your helmet loosen and re-tighten screws about once a month.
- To clean clear plastic face shields (e.g. Itech or Cooper Shields) use mild non-abrasive detergent such as dish soap and soft cloth, or Itech approved cleaners only.
- Most ringette protective equipment can be washed if the following precautions are taken:
- Remove all plastic foam pieces if possible.
- Use warm water cycle if there are no plastic or foam pieces, use cold water cycle for pieces with foam or plastic.
- Use only drum type washing machine or bathtub soaking. Do not use spindle type washing machines.
- To lessen wear and tape ball-up on goal sticks, tape stick twice. For bottom layer use black tape toe to heel and for upper layer use black or white tape heel to toe.
- To lessen friction between goal stick and stick glove, sand shaft with fine sandpaper or emery cloth, and rub in a light layer of floor paste wax.
- To lessen goal stick vibration at index finger; add 2 wraps of tape 2" down from top of paddle.
- All goalies should keep a small screwdriver and spare buckles and toe straps for emergency repairs