Sports gear that can be repurposed into protective gear in an emergency

While it’s true that there’s some great protective gear currently on the market that can be extremely helpful in a SHTF situation, this gear is often very expensive. A pair of Oakley Tactical shooting gloves, for instance, go for around $80, and Tactical Military knee pads will cost you roughly the same amount. Instead of emptying your wallet, consider instead purchasing some sporting gear, which can provide you with a substantial amount of protection at a much lower cost. Here are five common sports items that you can use to protect yourself in an emergency, courtesy of

1) Gloves

“Gloves are an important part of being prepared but not all gloves are the same,” writes Samantha Biggers of “While tough and rugged gloves for picking up junk or doing digging work are one thing, there are times that you need a glove that allows for better dexterity, grip, and feeling.” Biggers was referring to tactical gloves, but truthfully, sporting gloves function in much the same way. Weight-lifting gloves and motorcycle gloves are great for SHTF scenarios and can give you added protection, especially when engaging in a fist fight with an attacker. (Related: Here are tips and guidelines for choosing the right clothing and accessories for any survival situation.)

2) Football shorts

With padding on the hips and thighs typically stitched right into the material, football shorts are great for survival situations. The padding acts as a cushion that can minimize bumps and bruises in those areas, especially when lying in the prone position. Notably, however, one of the drawbacks of football or padded shorts is that they don’t have slots that allow you to urinate very easily. This means that guys will either have to make their own using “button snaps” or pull down on the waistband when they’ve got to go.

3) Knee and elbow pads

As previously mentioned, some knee pads can cost you upwards of $80 depending on the kind that you get. This expense can be avoided by purchasing some knee and elbow pads typically used for rollerblading and skateboarding. These pads are just as durable – if not, more durable – and they will cost you half the price of advanced protective gear. If you do purchase sporting pads, be sure to stick to earth tones or black in terms of color so that you don’t stand out like a sore thumb. The last thing that you want to have happen is to be hiding in the woods with a pair of neon orange knee and elbow pads. (Related: The Democrats have introduced a federal bill to criminalize citizen ownership of protective body armor.)

4) Wrist guards

Wrist guards that are made out of leather are particularly efficient when it comes to surviving a SHTF scenario, primarily because they will protect the wrists from being slashed by some kind of sharp blade. These will likely have to be custom-ordered for you, but if you decide against going with leather, you can always pick up a pair at Wal-Mart in the sporting goods section for less than $10.

5) Shin guards

Any type of shin guard is better than no shin guards at all, but the ones that are explicitly made for soccer players are the best. They can protect you from everything from low kicks thrown by attackers, to wading through swamps full of sharp sticks and rocks, to simply lying prone on top of rough terrain. Shin guards for soccer players are not hard to find at all (Wal-Mart most certainly has them in the sporting goods section) and they are extremely inexpensive.

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