Most goalies try to use their blocker, catcher, stick and leg pads to stop most of the shots that are taken at their net. But, sometimes you don't have any choice other than to absorb the puck with your chest or arms. That's what goalie chest and arm protectors are for. You'll find that more pucks than you'd probably prefer make it past your glove and blocker, and if you're lucky, the puck will hit you in the arm or chest rather than finding the back of the net behind you.
Goalie chest and arm protectors are built with many segmented pieces of padding that cover your arms from wrist to shoulder and your chest from collar bone to navel, as well as a varying amount of padding on the goalie's back and sides. A high quality C&A protector will leave very little of the torso exposed to pucks and sticks without causing the goaltender to have trouble moving his upper body. Protection is the #1 priority, but mobility shouldn't be completely sacrificed if you want to be an effective goalie. Over time, your chest protector will break in and allow for greater mobility, so don't worry too much about it if your C&A seems a little stiff at first.
Top notch chest protectors will come with higher quality padding that is usually more segmented than lower priced options, increasing mobility. You can also expect more expensive C&A's to offer more comfort, lighter-weight materials and better breathability. Some C&A's come with special adjustment features that allow you to change the length of the arm sleeves for a more precise fit. The back and side coverage is also noticeably better with a high quality C/A when compared to an entry level chest protector. Our advice is that you always purchase a chest and arm protector that corresponds to the protective needs you have at your level of competition.