You might think buying a pair of kneepads for volleyball is an easy enough chore to check off your ‘to-do’ list. But there are so many options on the market these days, that it can actually be a bit overwhelming.
These tried-and-tested styles have risen to the top of our list over the years, so we hope the information shared here will save you time, and help ensure you select the best pair of kneepads for your volleyball player!
There are some specific brands and styles of knee pads that dominate the competitive volleyball scene, and we’re here to save you time, and help you find the right pair for your daughter’s needs! We highlight some of the best kneepads for volleyball players, with special consideration for the needs of different player positions.
Note: if you’re looking for kneepads (or other gear!) for an especially small or young player (under age 10), you’ll find the best volleyball gear recommendations for the under 10 age range in this article!
These styles are volleyball specific, and are made by brands that are trusted by the most competitive girls volleyball players. So now we’ll dive in (pun intended!) and highlight the best, tried and true kneepads for girls indoor volleyball.
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Best Kneepads For Volleyball: Details Below
#1 Pick – Best Kneepads For Volleyball: Nike Streak Volleyball Kneepads (Appropriate For Any Position)
The Nike Streak kneepad is another excellent option for either back row or front row players.
This has become my daughter’s favorite style as she’s gotten older, perhaps because the fit is more contoured.
The Nike Streak kneepads are longer than many, but perhaps a bit less restrictive than the Mizuno T10 Plus style. This style stays in place without slipping, so it helps girls avoid floor burn just above and below the padding when repeatedly diving for the ball.
This pair offers notable comfort, as it wraps well around the kneecap. The pad is sewn in with a contoured pattern, helping to achieve great coverage along with the excellent comfort.
Best Volleyball Kneepads For Liberos + Defensive Specialists
Mizuno T10 Plus Kneepads – Top Choice For Liberos
This Mizuno brand pair is a great choice for back row players. The quality and style will stand up to the demands of a libero or defensive specialist.
This was my daughter’s go-to style through middle school and early high school.
Pros: This particular style is an excellent kneepad for any player, but it’s especially good for anyone who specializes in back row play. The extra height (above and below the sewn-in pad) give added protection from ‘floor burn’ when diving, and will keep these in place.
Cons: The specs on these are definitely longer than many other pairs, so they might feel like overkill to a front row player / hitter, who spends less time diving and digging. Some girls also find the extra material feels restrictive, so you have to balance coverage with fit.
Best Volleyball Kneepads For Front Row Players
# 1 Pick For Front Row Players: Nike Essentials Volleyball Kneepads – Best For Hitters / Front Row Players Who Want A Compact Style
This is a very common kneepad style on the club volleyball courts. The Nike Essentials style is great for front row players who want a less restrictive, shorter-height style, that will still perform well when needed.
Front row players are going to spend a lot less time diving, so the longer styles above may not be necessary for girls who play front row.
Pros: Super lightweight foam, along with a shorter overall size make these less restrictive for hitters, while still offering protection when they are covering short balls (and sometimes have to dive). This is an extremely common style, and you’ll certainly see a lot of them on club courts!
Cons: The density of the foam can be an issue for players who also play back row / serve receive. It’s harder, and less conforming for getting low to the ground, so might not be the best fit for back row specific (or all around) position players.
Mizuno LR6 Volleyball Kneepad – Best For Front Row Players Who Prefer A Softer / Contoured Foam Pad
The Mizuno LR6 is a great all-around option, for girls who play both front and back row. This style will stay in place, offer some good ‘floor burn’ protection, but also good comfort and less restriction for front row specific players.
The shorter overall height of this pair makes them more ideal for a front row player than the Mizuno T10, but the softer foam is more comfortable for some girls who don’t like the denser foam feeling of the Nike Essentials (above).
These are a bit more contoured, so may offer a better form fit for girls who prefer a shorter length kneepad for hitting, but still need some good impact protection for passing and covering short balls up front.
Best Kneepads For Volleyball – Girls Under 10
Sizing can be especially challenging for the youngest / smallest players. But fear non, volleyball moms! We have an article dedicated to finding the best volleyball gear for youth.
For Girls Under 10, Head Over To This Article To Find The Best Gear For The Youngest Players / Smallest Sizes!
Considerations when shopping for volleyball kneepads:
Kneepads take the bulk of the wear, when it comes to volleyball gear. As such, you’ll want to stick to the well known brands, for the most trusted fit and durability. Comfort is essential, when you consider the movement and diving required on the volleyball court. Here are the most important things to consider, to ensure you select the best pair for your (or your daughter’s needs):
Overall Length Of Kneepad
Different styles vary dramatically, in terms of how much skin above and below the pad itself is covered. The best for your player will depend on the position they play. Back row players will especially appreciate the longer styles, to give extra coverage for diving – helping them avoid bruising and floor burns.
On the other end of the spectrum, players who specialize in the front row may prefer a more compact style, that feels less restrictive for hitting, but will give some impact protection when needed.
Most kneepads contain a soft, yet high density foam insert. The thickness will impact fit and how restrictive the pads feel, so most players opt for a fairly low-profile pad (vs. the styles with a super thick padding). However, the foam inserts will vary in overall length. The longer pads are best for back row players, to protect the areas above and below the knee itself, when diving.
Some styles (like the Nike Essentials) have an incredibly firm /dense interior pad, that is less flexible, and probably best for front-row players.
Color – What Color Kneepad Is Best For Volleyball?
The two main colors for volleyball kneepads are white and black. All of the styles that made our recommended list come in both colors. Generally speaking, white kneepads are a bit more common, but black kneepads look nicer for longer (because they hide the grime).
It’s important to note that many teams will require a specific color, so the team matches. Inquire with your club or coach before you order, to make sure you don’t order the wrong color!
Overall, you can’t go wrong with any of these kneepad brands and styles (in terms of them being appropriate for the game, and of reliable quality and construction). The best fit and style for each player will depend on the position they play, and the overall style that they feel most comfortable in on the court!
While we’re on the subject… if your kneepads are just stinky, you might not need a new pair if they’re still in decent shape! You CAN get the stink out of a pair of kneepads, to help give them a longer life!