5 Best Youth Football Shoulder Pads: Compare & Save 2018

If you’re going to play contact football, you will need the proper equipment. And the most two important pieces are the helmet and shoulder pads, which are what we’re going to focus on for the purpose of this post. More specifically, youth football shoulder pads.

Shoulder pads are designed to protect your shoulders (thanks, Capt. Obvious), but they also provide security for much of the upper body, head, and neck. They consist of a harder outer shell and soft, yet tough, padding underneath the shell, which helps absorb shock upon contact.

Choosing the right shoulder pads for your child is important and we’ve compiled a list below to help make your decision easier. Some feature more advanced technology, which you’ll probably pay a bit more for. Then there are also more budget-friendly pads, which certainly serve the purpose of on-field protection just without the bells and whistles of the pricier models.

So let’s take a look at what we’ve come up with.

What are the best youth football shoulder pads?


1. Gear 2000 Youth Intimidator Junior Shoulder Pad – From $31.00

youth football shoulder pads

(Gear/Amazon)

Pros: Cons:
  • Quick drying moisture management system
  • Durable non-stretch underarm strap system
  • Sizes run from XXXL to Large (30 to 145 pounds)
  • Suitable for all positions
  • Some users felt they ran a little big
  • Some users felt the padding was a little thin

If your child is new to the game and you’re on a budget, the Gear2000 Intimidator Junior Youth Football Shoulder Pads could be right up your alley. Most sizes cost under $45 and boast some features that more expensive pads do.

One of them is the moisture wicking system which pulls sweat away from the body and into the padding which dries in 4 hours. The flat pad construction offers comfort, protection, and won’t limit range of motion. The Gear2000’s are also highlighted by durable non-stretch underarm straps.

These pads are suitable for positions on the field and come in a number of sizes — XXX-Small (for 30 to 45 pound players), XX-Small (40 to 65 pounds), X-Small (60 to 80 pounds), Small (75 to 100 pounds), Medium (95 to 120 pounds), and Large (115 to 140 pounds).

Buy the Gear 2000 Youth Intimidator Junior Shoulder Pad here.


2. Schutt Sports Y-Flex 4.0 All Purpose Shoulder Pad – From $48.56

schutt sports youth football shoulder pads

(Schutt Sports/Amazon)

Pros: Cons:
  • Extended length for added protection
  • Has antimicrobial treatment to prevent mold and bacteria growth
  • Dual-density foam padding for extra comfort
  • A 3-point belt system for a secure fit
  • Some users feel the pads can run a bit small
  • Some might feel they are too bulky due to the extended length

Hit the field in style with the Schutt Sports Y-Flex 4.0 All Purpose Shoulder Pads. The sleek black-based pads with green highlights provide maximum protection and comfort all game long. They have an extended length which will help prevent injuries to the chest and midsection.

As for comfort and fit, the Y-Flex 4.0 pads have you covered. The dual-density foam padding, along with the breathable mesh and ventilation holes, will provide excellent air flow to keep you cool and comfortable. And the 3-point belt system is design to give a secure, custom fit. There’s also antimicrobial treatment to prevent mold and bacteria growth.

The sizes are recommended for players of the following weights — XXX-Small (under 60 pounds), XX-Small (60 to 75 pounds), X-Small (75 to 90 pounds), Small (90 to 105 pounds), Medium (105 to 120 pounds), Large (120 to 135 pounds), X-Large (135 to 150 pounds), and XX-Large (150 pounds and up).

There is also an older model of these. Get the Schutt Sports Y-Flex 2.0 Shoulder Pads here.

Buy the Schutt Sports Y-Flex 4.0 All Purpose Shoulder Pad here.


3. TAG ALT II 844 Youth Football Shoulder Pad – $169.99

tag youth football shoulder pads

(TAG/Amazon)

Pros: Cons:
  • Shoulder epaulet is made of strong polycarbonite, yet the pads are very lightweight
  • Deltoid pads can be adjusted and removed
  • Antimicrobial lining
  • Machine washable (hang dry)
  • On the pricey side
  • Only available in sizes small and medium (roughly 100 pounds and under)

The TAG ALT II 844 Youth Football Shoulder Pads might be the most expensive ones on this list ($169.99), but they have features and technology some college teams would be envious of. The shoulder epaulet is made of a strong polycarbonate offers maximum protection and durability, but thanks to the “honeycomb” technology helps make the pads nearly 15 percent than most on the market.

Other highlights include deltoid pads which can be adjusted or removed (attached by velcro), an antimicrobial treatment in the lining to prevent mold and other bacteria growth, and an adjustable 3-layer clavicle system for added protection. The belt and buckle system guarantees a secure and custom fit, minimizing sliding and shifting. The ALT II 884s are also machine washable. Just be sure to hang dry them.

Looking for the upgrade? For $199.95, you can get the TAG ALT III 944 Shoulder Pads here. These have a wider variety of sizes (XX-Small through XX-Large).

Despite the rather steep price, the TAG ALT line have some of the best youth football shoulder pads on the market.

Buy the TAG ALT II 844 Youth Football Shoulder Pad here.


4. CHAMPRO Youth Scorpion Football Shoulder Pads – $24.95

best youth football shoulder pads

(Champro/Amazon)

Pros: Cons:
  • High impact arch for protection and durability
  • Adjustable 1 inch elastic straps for easy custom fitting
  • Low price
  • Lack the advanced technology others on the list have
  • There is no free shipping

If you’re on a budget, but still looking for a quality set, you might want to learn more about the Champro Youth Scorpion Football Shoulder Pads. Available for under $30, these might not have all the bells and whistles like some other pads on this list, but you’ll get the bang for your buck.

Some of the highlights include a high impact arch which provides extra protection and durability, adjustable 1 inch straps for an easy custom, non-slip fit, and pre-drilled holes in case you need to add any extra accessories.

There are a wide range of sizes available from XX-Small (under 40 pounds), X-Small (40 to 60 pounds), Small (60 to 90 pounds), Medium (80 to 110 pounds), Large (100 to 130 pounds), X-Large (130 to 150 pounds), and XX-Large (150 to 180 pounds).

For a different model from this company, check out the Champro Sports Shock Wave Shoulder Pads here.

Buy the CHAMPRO Youth Scorpion Football Shoulder Pads here.


5. Gear Pro-Tec Z-COOL Shoulder Pads – From $91.90

gear youth football shoulder pads

(Gear/Amazon)

Pros: Cons:
  • Moisture-management system to keep players cool and dry
  • Adjustable clavicle pads for added protection
  • Extra sternum protection
  • Padding provides excellent absorption on impact
  • On the pricey side
  • They might be a bit bulky for some players

We’ve come to the end of the road. But the Gear Pro-Tec Z-COOLs are still some of the best youth football shoulder pads you’re going to find. The name says it all — Z-COOL. These pads are designed to keep you dry and comfortable all game long. They have a moisture-management system which pulls sweat away from the body and promotes circulation, which will keep you cool so you can be at your best on the field.

Other highlights include foam padding to help absorb force on impact, helping to eliminate injury. Extremely light — weighing roughly just 3 pounds — the Z-COOLS also features an adjustable clavicle system and an extended length, both of which provide maximum protection. And the 1 inch belt will help you get a custom, secure fit so the pads won’t slip or slide.

The pads come in a variety of sizes, ranging from X-Small to XXX-Large.

Buy the Gear Pro-Tec Z-COOL Shoulder Pads here.


Also see:

5 Best Mouthguards for Kids
10 Best Youth Football Gloves
5 Best Clear Football Helmet Visors

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Source: Heavy Sports