I had the opportunity to test out a number of products from CCM over the past few months. I tested and reviewed a Ribcor Trigger stick, a Jet Speed stick, women’s WS1 shoulder pads, women’s WS1 pants, and AS1 skates.
For comparison purposes (for anyone looking to buy these products and wondering about sizing), I am 5’4”, 130lbs and am a women’s size seven shoe.
I’m going to start with the stick reviews. The Ribcor Trigger 3D is CCM’s newest low kick point stick. The low kick point make’s this stick a great choice for quick release shots. I’m testing out the Intermediate 55 flex stick. I’ve cut my stick down about six inches, so it’s around 60 flex now. One of the first things I noticed was that the intermediate stick has rounded edges on the shaft and that the sides of the shaft are concave, giving it a great feeling and fit for smaller hands. The stick feels nice and light, and has a very comfortable fit and feel overall. I’ve always had a hard time finding an intermediate stick with a soft enough flex for me, and am happy to say that this stick is the first one that I’ve been able to fully utilize the flex. This stick has added quite the ‘zing’ to my shot. I’m still learning how to use and control the flex but whenever I do get it, the puck shoots so fast. This stick adds so much extra speed and power to my shots.
I also got to test out the CCM Intermediate Jet Speed 55 flex stick. I also cut this one down about six inches, so it’s close to a 60 flex now. This is a hybrid kick point stick. It feels slightly heavier than the Trigger 3D and also feels a bit stiffer. I have a harder time flexing this stick although it is the same flex. The Jet Speed feels like a sturdier stick overall. I find that the Jet Speed is a bit easier to control hard passes with, because of the stiffer feel. It also feels great for snap shots and slap shots!
Out of the two sticks, my personal favourite is the Trigger 3D. My favourite things about it are the feeling and fit of the shaft with its concave and rounded edges, and the low kick point for those quick release shots in closer to the net.
Pants and Shoulder Pads
I’ve always worn senior small protective equipment so I was excited about testing the CCM WS1 women’s specific pants and shoulder pads. I tested a size large pant, but I think I would fit better into a medium but it’s hard to say for sure without trying it on. I found that the large pant fit perfect around my waist but was a bit too long down the leg. Because the pants fit too long down the leg, I did have some exposure where there was no padding around the groin and inner thigh area. I don’t think this would be a problem in a medium size pant because the padding would be in the right place. On the plus side, it meant having an exceptional amount of space for flexibility and movement.
There were no restrictive feelings at all in the pants. The pants have a high quality look and feel overall. The material is durable and there are a lot of extra details in the pants. The length of the pants can be extended by unzipping around the waist. This is great because the sizing and fit can be tailored perfectly to each individual since there are essentially two length options per size. This would also be handy for minor hockey players who are growing! T
he pants also have a zipper from the bottom to mid-section of the leg to increase the width, and a nice Velcro flap that covers the zipper at the bottom for a clean look. The pants have great protection around the hip and kidney area. They also fit very comfortably on the hips. The tailpiece on the back of the pants provides exceptional protection, especially to the tailbone area. I didn’t like the feel of the tailpiece however, it felt a bit bulky and awkward. I am getting used to it over time.
I really like the women’s specific shoulder pads! It offers so much protection all around. The padding on the torso has almost 360 degree coverage. It is designed in a way that allows for lots of movement and flexibility. I must say that I found this uncomfortable the first few wears but I’ve grown to love it. I also like the added confidence of having so much protection on that area between the shoulder pads and pants. The lower torso piece can also be removed if you don’t like it.
The spine protection on the back is stiff for protection but still feels comfortable. I really like the neck opening on the shoulder pads, it’s quite large and feels spacious and un-restricting. The shoulders fit and feel a lot better than the men’s pads do, and they performed well during my recent body checking and body contact skills sessions. I do wish that the lower shoulder area had an extendable option so that it could be fitted to cover the gap between my elbow pads and shoulder pads. Over all, I really liked these women’s specific shoulder pads.
I’d also like to note that the pants and shoulder pads make a great combo. They overlap each other well to give complete coverage, with no gaps on the torso between the pants and should pads.
I’m super excited about the new Super Tack AS1 skates! I’m testing out a size 4D width junior skate. The first thing I noticed right out of the box was how light the skate was. One of the features of this skate is the one piece composite boot, which allows it to be so light. The boot also offers an amazing fit. It fit really well right out of the box, and even better after having it molded. The boot is quite stiff, which I was unsure of at first because I typically like a softer boot since I’m fairly small and light. However, after wearing the skate and getting to test it out, I found that I really liked the responsiveness of the stiff boot.
I found the tongues to be a bit higher than what I like, and I have a hard time getting them tucked under my shin pads because of this. Other than that, I like everything else about the tongue. The front of the tongue is hard enough to protect the foot, and soft enough to flex for good performance. CCM found a great balance between protection and performance. Overall, the boot and tongue wrap around the entire foot really well. They are the best fitting skate I’ve had the opportunity to try and are comfortable to wear for long periods of time. The snug fit combined with the stiff boot creates a really high response. The lightness of the skate makes for a quick and effortless feel during agile movements.
I took a hard pass/shot off of the blade holder a week into testing and it chipped a piece off of the holder. The puck was raised off the ice a few inches and hit the holder in an awkward spot causing it to chip off. CCM was very quick to replace to the skates with a new pair. The new pair have been great and I haven’t had any issues. Overall these are my favourite skates that I’ve ever worn and the most comfortable and form fitting by far.
The blades are coated with a black oxide coating which helps prevent rusting and provides a smoother glide. I personally can’t feel a noticeable difference between this coating and regular blades, but I am still new to the sport and its equipment so do not have as much experience with the feeling of different blades and coatings.
These skates also come with customizable insoles for low, medium or high arch feet. I already have a customized insole for my arch and foot so I didn’t try the CCM insoles. I think it’s fantastic that CCM has included three different arch options for anyone who doesn’t already have insoles.