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The "Professor Strap"


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A little over 3 years ago, I wrote a post in a goalie forum about a strapping concept that I had developed at Passau called "The Professor" strap. It's been fun to see how that term has taken hold and become part of the goalie equipment lexicon.  I'm reposting that original article here in it's entirety explaining the genesis and benefits. The response to the strap over the years has been overwhelmingly positive, so much so that it is now standard on all sets of pads we make at Passau.  Hope you enjoy!

I frequently receive questions about my own pad strapping setup which is, admittedly, very unique. One of the most esoteric elements of the setup is something I call "The Professor Strap" which is a direct nod to a modification Ben Scrivens has on his pads. Interesting, my fascination with the i notation of a leather strap to help secure the knee more in place without inhibiting movement, but Jonas Hiller's setup. Hiller uses two leather straps (in lieu of elastic straps) for his knee cradle which he drops down across the top of his thigh. This allows him to wear his pads very loose but keep the knee from slipping off the knee block (which is critical for him as he wears very large knee guards). In my research however, I felt that Ben Scrivens had taken that basic concept to a better level, and for that reason sought to have Scrivens' design (or a version thereof) replicated on my own pads. Here's a little summary of what it is.

The Professor Strap:
Any goalie that follows the NHL will note that Ben Scrivens’ pads are very unique in terms of design. What appear to be very loose fitting pads are, in fact, strapped extremely tightly. This is because the Cornell graduate (nicknamed “The Professor”) puts a tremendous amount of thought into how his pads are designed. What makes Scrivens’ pad so unique is that 1) he has a hidden leather strap at the very top of his calf, at the very bottom of his knee, that he cinches down very tightly and 2) he has that strap actually through the foam of the pad’s interior.

#1 is shown in photos below of a pair of his returned pads and #2 was verified by a designer. Personally I think #2 is unnecessary, as I believe that the design can be worn both very tight or loose. It’s the placement of the strap, not the tension, that I think makes this design so unique. In the below pic, you can see the strap directly below the knee cradle, a white leather strap with an extra sheath for comfort.

What I think is so intelligent about the strap placement is that it allows the pad to be worn higher on the leg (as it will naturally gravitate toward the top of the calf) and the close placement near (but not behind) the knee allows for added pad responsiveness. If the strap were worn behind the knee, it would experience interference from the knee guards and may interfere with the overall movement of the knee. In contrast, the top of the calf is very stable. This will be the primary anchor of the pad to the leg. Additionally, due to the static nature of the strap (which, in our version, is leather with velcro stitched to it to allow for micro adjustments), the strap acts as a catch to make it impossible for your knee to fall off the back of the knee block.

I've been wearing this setup for 8 months now and absolutely love it. I keep it relatively loose which allows the pad to rotation freely w/o issue but also extremely responsive. I have another set of pads in the works at the Passau shop, and while I changed many elements from my current set, the Professor Strap was included on the required spec list for my new pads.

Professor Strap - Scrivens.jpg

Professor Strap 1.jpg

Professor Strap 2.jpg

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