How do new hockey products take shape? It usually takes a person or group that is out to solve a problem. In hockey, most of the new products do solve problems. The last major one that took shape at all levels was the Bauer LS Edge (Trigger Release) . There have been a few shaping up at the lower levels among smaller companies. One of our favorites and that’s very unique is the Third Assist pond hockey glove.
The Third Assist hockey glove is helping make cold hands a thing of the past. If you are lucky enough to play outdoors on the ponds, you know that cold hands can be a real struggle. Chris with Third Assist wanted to create a product that could help solve this problem.
Chris had a background in outdoor product development and as our initial article about Third Assist goes into, he started out with sampling materials and getting gloves just right. He wanted a traditional 4-roll glove that could be lined with a warm insulated material. The manufacturer he selected to make the glove, said it could be possible but the gloves would have to be made by hand. This would cause the price to go up. For Chris, the increase wasn’t going to be an issue, as long as the gloves were warm and could still be functional, and he could keep the gloves at a reasonable price. This project started a few years ago, and his product has evolved.
After getting a solid product out for year one, he has been able to do what some bigger companies can’t. He asks regular users and gets feedback. Every year Third Assist makes tweaks to the gloves. A modification for this year, there is a bigger wider cuff. It allows your coat, jacket, or sweatshirt can slide in the glove. Then it does not interfere. The main glove stays consistent from year to year but it is small tweaks like these that come from average user feedback, that make this glove and company one of a kind.
This product gets better and better every year. While it won’t probably make it to the NHL level, it is just one of a few new hockey products that are being offered. It just goes to show how the little companies can help keep moving the game forward.