In the past three months of playing goal specifically on turf I have gone through two pair of goalie gloves, and not the $15 dollar bargain bin gloves either. I have to splurge on the gloves equipped with finger saves. So after having the turf chew through 2 pairs of semi expensive goalie gloves I have finally decided to explore the realm of turf gloves to see how they hold up.
I went ahead and got out of my glove comfort zone and decided to try out HO soccer equipment. I usually like to stick to Brine or adidas for my gloves but I wanted to branch out a bit. Ho has only been around since 2001 so they have been around for a fair bit of time and I’m curious to see how they measure up. I went to keeperstop.com (who have a very helpful and knowledgeable staff) and pre-ordered myself a pair of the Turf Protek in a size 10 for a healthy $45.
This is my first time encountering Ho gloves and I have to say I really enjoy the detailing and how they are put together. The rough palm looks aggressive, the shock of orange and blue on the back hand gives it a nice pop. Overall the glove has a subtle bit of flair to it and the construction is quite solid and simple as well. One issue I will raise is that there is no swatch on the back of the glove or wrist enclosure to wipe sweat off the brow, something I personally love in a goalie glove. Though there is a loop at the opening to easily get them on.
I sometimes bounce between a size 9 and a size 10 with my gloves, I have found that I like a bit of space at the finger tip. The Turf Protek in a 10 fit pretty well, though I found that they fit pretty spot on for the sizing. I wouldn’t have gone any bigger though so stick to your regular comfort range.
The Finger Saves and Protection
These are probably my favorite finger saves that I have encountered to date. Since becoming a massage therapist I’ve had to duck out of goal until I finally picked up a pair of gloves with finger saves (bent fingers aren’t good for business) so I’ve gone through at least 5 pairs of different pairs of gloves that utilize finger saves. The finger saves used here are the perfect length and flex, I’ve had no issues with bend back and hyper extension. I’ve run into a few pairs of finger saves that buckle when bent back which wasn’t so fun but I’ve had no issues with the Protek at all. The saves also don’t interfere with flex at all which is ideal when getting a glove with saves. One grievance I have is that the wrist enclosure doesn’t quite keep the wrist as protected as I would like, but the flip side is you get a bit of mobility which is helpful with throws. Overall I’ve pleased with the amount of protection I get from them.
Palm and Durability
The main attraction to this glove is the rugged and textured 3mm rough profile latex palm which is supposed to supply extra durability. This has happened to be very true. Usually at this point in wear my gloves have had a few gouges taken out of the palm but these guys show almost no wear at all. These are definitely made to take a thorough beating. The only place that have shown wear as of now are the finger tips at the back of the glove and this is after a months worth of wear.
Grip, In Game
Starting off the grip was lack luster, the folks at Keeperstop said as much and I fully expected a bumpy start at the least. Thus held true as they start off a bit slick, I did prep the glove with a light spritzing of room temp water. However after the first game the grip got a bit better as the moisture from the first game infused the glove a bit more, I did store them in their bag to ensure this. The second game the gloves were much more efficient, not so much of a cushioned kind of grip but more of a sticky kind of grip. They perform to par, I could see these as being acceptable as a game pair after a practice session worth of wear. I would heavily caution against using them in wet condition however. Over wet conditions make them a bit slick. The shock from hard shots don’t leave any sting or ache after impact so there is enough padding between you and the ball.
On the website they are listed as being training gloves which I have to agree to on some points. You aren’t going to get over the top performance from these. But I would honestly peg these as the most durable gloves I have worn to date. So I would also put these up as the more wear for your money kind of option. On a level of rec league to Premier league I would put these at High school level performance. After the break in they get the job done and If you find you practice and play a lot on turf, buy yourself a pair. They will last quite a while by my estimation. The finger saves are also a worth while investment and I’m very happy with them. However the wet conditions play was lack luster, but these are made for more normal and dry conditions. Also if the sweat pad on the backhand is a must, then you will have to pass these up or get a headband.
Right now you can find the Ho Turf Protec Flat at Keeperstop.com