Monday, July 18, 2011 Wrist guards, elbow pads, knee pads and helmets must have a hard protective shell or inserts.

Yesterday's rule explained what constitutes required protective equipment. Today's rule explains that the pads required to be worn must have plastic shells or inserts. What this means is that gaskets, volleyball pads, and most hardware store pads can't be worn (although some hardware store knee pads have plastic shells, using them is probably a bad idea). When it comes to wrist guards they must have A hard shell on one or both sides, or have a plastic insert - usually removable - secured on/in it. Although the rules don't particularly specify, wrist guards should be secured in some way by the hand (such as full glove types, or with thumb holes). This prevents the wrist guard from sliding and becoming ineffective. A wrist guard that isn't secured by the hand may not be approved during a pre-bout equipment check. Helmets must also have a plastic shell. No soft helmets, such as those designed for horse back riding, boxing, or sumo suit wrestling.