Goalies need as much protection as they can get, which is why they wear more gear than forwards and defensemen. Goalie masks, leg pads, chest protectors, blockers and gloves handle most of the responsibility of protecting a goalie's body from hockey pucks, sticks and other players on the ice. But even with all of the protective goalie equipment that is worn, sometimes there are still a few holes to fill in order to fully protect a goalie. That's where protective accessories like goalie thigh guards, goalie jocks and goalie knee protectors come into play.
Leg pads and goalie pants are worn to protect a goalie's legs, and they accomplish that goal quite well. But there is often a little bit of space between the top of the leg pads and the bottom edge of the pants. Goalie thigh guards and knee protectors, of course, serve the purpose of protecting the thighs and knees of the goaltender in the small gaps left by the larger pieces of goalie equipment. Thigh guards are usually tied to the top of the leg pads so that a goalie's lower thighs are protected when he goes into the butterfly position. Knee protectors, which are usually velcro'd on like a knee brace to be worn under your goalie leg pads, serve a very similar purpose to thigh guards. The knee protectors add a bit of extra cushioning for the goalie's knees and also protect the top edge of the knees.
Goalie pants do not typically contain a cup to protect the goalie's reproductive parts. In order to supplement the protection provided by goalie pants, a goalie jock is worn under the pants. Goalie jocks are built wider and thicker than player's jocks because of the nature of the goaltender's position. While goalie thigh guards and knee protectors are more optional pieces of equipment, Hockey Giant strongly suggests that you always wear a goalie jock when playing hockey. Goalie jocks are NOT considered supplemental protection – jocks are a necessity for all players, especially goalies.