How to choose batting pads

Selecting a good pair of batting pads is an important decision, primarily because they tend to last longer than any other piece of kit and therefore will be with you for the longest period of time. Get it wrong and you could be looking at a mistake for many years.

First of all, batting pads will usually come in left and right handed models. An alternative to this would be an ambidextrous pair that can be worn by both right and left handed players. It shouldn’t be too complicated, as both the right and left and models as well as the ambidextrous models will offer you the correct amount of side bolster protection.

With regards to size, your knee should align with the centre part of the knee section to the back of the batting legguards.

In terms of adults sizes, there is the small men’s size which suits players around 5ft 5″ to  5ft 8″, we then have the men size which is suitable for players around 5ft 9″ to 6ft and then the large men’s size is for players taller than 6ft.

For juniors the sizes offered can vary from brand to brand. Some can classify them as Boys and Youths, whereas others have Junior and Junior Large.

In the VKS range we carry a large range of sizes starting from Ultra Mini for the youngest of players through to a new size we created called Large Boys. This Large Boys size is just smaller than the Youth/Small Men’s size and has been extremely popular as it bridges a gap in the size range.

In respect to the different styles and designs of batting Legguards, we could start by simplifying them into 3 categories, namely traditional, modern and moulded.

The traditional design pads are the ones which have the 7 to 8 slim bars running vertically down the front of the pad. Very often the front bars have cane inserts which add protection to the front of the pad. Those that don’t have the cane inserts will still offer top quality protection thanks to the high density foam inserts pleased within the bars and will also reduce the weight.

The modern design pad have large single section panels to the front and the side and are usually complimented by a few vertical bars which break up the design of the larger panels. These pads tend to be lightweight and flexible when worn.

The moulded design pads are similar to the ones one by Sachin Tendulkar. They are extremely lightweight but also rather rigid and not very flexible. They certainly don’t suit all batsmen and despite being used by some many popular mainstream players have never really taken off due to their limiting feel.

Getting the correct size of batting pads is very important, especially for junior players. A pad that is too large, will very often hinder a batsmens running and therefore severely restrict them when trying to take single runs between the wicket.

A lot of emphasis nowadays is being placed upon the weight of batting legguards. Whilst this may seem important, once they are on a few grams here and there is it really going to make too much of a difference. After all you must take into account you don’t really measure the weight of your trousers and socks and those two are been worn in the same way as your pads.

In terms of price, you can expect to pay anywhere from £25 for a junior pad up to over £100 for a senior model, with lots of different price points in between offering excellent quality and value for money.

We at the VKS have a large number of pads and catering to all price points and with some extremely light models too, possibly some of the lightest on the market.

Vinay Bedi