Photo courtesy of KimurawearWomen’s Protective Equipment: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly Quincy Mutter November 18, 2014 News To follow up on the previous article discussing the importance of proper protection in women’s MMA, The MMA Corner has come up with a list of the best and worst protective equipment for women on the market. I first discovered the need for a groin protector while my 185 pound teammate was trying to pass my guard. He dropped his weight into a shin slice and aimed way too high. After a minute of crying in the fetal position on the mat, I went into the change room to recover and vowed to find a Jill, pronto. Trouble was, it’s not so easy to find a good female groin protector. It took me months of searching and testing, but I finally found one that is comfortable and effective. And so, with the knowledge I have gained through my own experience, hours of research, and through polling other female fighters, I present the best, worst, and ugliest chest and groin protectors for women. The Good Kuma Female Groin Protector This is the one I currently use, and I am, for the most part, happy with it. I rate it a 9/10 for protection but a 2/10 for appearance. Its thickness is what makes it so effective, but it doesn’t look the best underneath spandex shorts. One thing I love about it is the triangle cut-out to protect my (ahem) most sensitive area. TITLE Female Groin Protector I know several women who use this model and are very happy with it. It is sleeker than the Kuma and offers the same protection. It also seems like it would be more comfortable with grappling. I would definitely recommend this product. Shock Doctor Women’s Pelvic Protector This is your best bet if you prefer jock-strap style protection. The cup is small enough for comfortable grappling and can fit in any jock strap or compression short with a Jill compartment. The only downside is they are meant for hockey, and therefore don’t wrap underneath to protect you from blows from below. TITLE Boxing Turtle Shells Protective Sports Bra This is unanimously the best product on the market for female mixed martial artists. Every woman I know who wears a chest protector uses this style. They also sell separate bras and cups if you need multiple pairs for washing/wearing. Coat FBT Female Breasts Genuine Leather Muay Thai Chest Protector I’m curious about this product – and not just because it kind of looks like something out of 50 Shades of Grey. The leather wicks sweat for easy cleaning and can be worn over a sports bra or tank top for comfort. You could wear this piece of equipment every day with no worries of washing beyond a quick wipe after each use. And at a steep 100 dollars, you can probably assume it provides top-level protection – if you can afford it. The Bad Protex Women’s Pelvic Protector My parents saw this in a Sports Chek and picked it up for me, and it was horrible. It has the same flaw as the Shock Doctor, being the lack of protection underneath, and is also very uncomfortable. The cup is surrounded in foam to provide a cushion between the plastic and your legs, but it makes it too wide, which is very uncomfortable. I also had problems with the cup falling out as there’s no Velcro. Tiger Claws Female Outer Supporter Beyond the fact that they are clearly uncomfortable with any words referring to the female pelvic area, this looks like a horribly uncomfortable piece of equipment. Unless you wear boy short style underwear, the loop connecting the padding to the strap is bound to chafe. It also looks a bit wide, which would be cumbersome while grappling. The Martial Arts Store Female Chest Protector Who designed this? The Ugly Revgear Women’s Groin/AB Protector (Black) This hideous piece of equipment would probably offer the best protection out there. It could be handy to have around for Muay Thai or Boxing, but I definitely wouldn’t use it for MMA or grappling. If you’re interested in a multi-functional cup, this one isn’t for you. Lonsdale Female Style Groin Protector Maybe it’s for pregnant women? TITLE Boxing Female Training Chest Protector Like the Revgear groin protector, this product offers the best protection, but it comes with bulk. The wrap around style protects your organs from body shots, but I don’t see it being good for grappling. This would be another piece of equipment to use only for striking arts.