How to Break-In Your Shinguards

Muay Thai is the art of the eight limbs. Punches, elbows, knees, and of course – kicks. Whether it’s your first day stepping into a gym, or you’re training for a fight. You can guarantee you’re going to be doing a whoooole lot of kicking. Similar to how you wear wraps and gloves to protect your hands for punches, the same protection would be needed for your shins.

Shin guards are a must-have for any Muay Thai arsenal, but they can be quite uncomfortable and restrictive when they're brand new. This article will go over some tips for breaking in your Muay Thai shin guards, and making them more comfortable to wear as soon as possible.

Start with a Good Fit

The first step to successfully breaking in your Muay Thai shin guards is to make sure that you've got the right size. If you started off with the shin guards that are too big or too small, you could feel like you’re starting to go insane. Week after week. Month after month. And they still just don’t feel right? Hate to be the bearer of bad news but.. No matter what you do, they will always feel uncomfortable. 

How to avoid this? Choosing the right fit from the get-go. When you’ve got your new pair of shin guards, make sure that they fit snugly around your leg without being too tight or too loose. A little bit of leeway one way or the other is fine, as that is what you’ll be able to resolve after breaking them in. You should also make sure that they cover your shins properly and that they don't slip down or shift around during training.

Wear Them Around the House

This one absolutely anybody can do. One of the easiest ways to break in your Muay Thai shin guards is to wear them around the house. It’s as simple as that! Strap them on while you're doing chores or watching TV, and keep them on for as long as you can. Vacuuming the house never felt so good. 😉 This will help to mould the shin guards to the shape of your leg and soften up any hard edges or stiff materials.

Use Them for Light Training

Just like you need to warm up your body into more strenuous exercise, the same can be saidyou’re your shin guards. Start off with some light kicks on a heavy bag or focus pads, and gradually work your way up to harder kicks and sparring sessions. This will help to loosen up the materials in the shin guards and make them more comfortable to wear. It will also help to prolong the lifespan of your shin guards too.




Massage Them with Your Hands

If your Muay Thai shin guards feel too stiff or uncomfortable, you can try massaging them with your hands to soften them up. Really get in there and work the materials within the shin guards, focusing on any areas that are particularly stiff or uncomfortable. This will help to break down the fibres in the shin guards and make them more flexible.

Use Fabric Softener

Mix some fabric softener with water in a spray bottle, then spray the solution on the shin guards and let them dry. You’ll notice your shin guards softened up and more ‘broken in’. You can even use this fabric softener as a form of ‘massage oil’ for your shin guards.

Be Patient

This may be the hardest tip for most people but breaking in your shin guards can take some time, so you may just need to apply some patience and trust the process. Keep wearing the shin guards and using them for training, and they'll gradually become more comfortable over time. Remember that it's better to have slightly uncomfortable shin guards (only for now) than to risk injury by not wearing them at all.

In sum, breaking in your Muay Thai shin guards takes time and patience, but it's worth the effort to have a comfortable and protective piece of equipment that has been solely moulded for no one else in the world but yourself.