CCM AS-V Pro Protectives Review
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May 24, 2022 || Written by Katie Lakusta
CCM’s newest chapter in the Tacks saga can be best described as refined, bold, and ambitious. We haven’t seen a proper upgrade to the Tacks protective line since the AS1 in 2019, but now that we’ve reached the AS-V era, we can conclude that it was definitely worth the wait. The new Tacks AS-V Pro player protective line builds on what made the AS1 so successful, and then some. With a brand new graphics palette coupled with an Anatomical Shield Design, the AS-V Pro looks to offer only the best in performance and protection.
Anatomical Shield Design
As the name implies, the Anatomical Shield Design, or ASD, is in how the gear molds to fit you and your body shape. Flexmotion is the gear’s ability to move and readjust its anatomy. The design is greatly contributed to by various strappings and adjustments on the gear. ASD encompasses CCM’s major focus and framework for their 2022 Tacks line, and coupled with Flexmotion tech, the gear is fully able to give you ultimate coverage on the ice, no matter how you play.
Similarly, the strapping systems have also been redesigned and optimized on the AS-V, allowing you to get the closest fit possible. The arrangement is a huge factor in the gear’s peerless comfortability—it’s actually amazing just how much this gear can cover you while still feeling like just a second skin. CCM’s science-backed ASD and ADPTFit technologies serve as integral parts of the gear’s overall performance.
Of course, this couldn’t be considered a protective CCM collection without D3O foam. D3O material has traditionally been used in a myriad of industries, including workwear, electronics, and even military equipment due to its astonishing force-absorption properties. CCM consistently applies this material to specific areas in their protective gear that need the most protection.
You’ll notice on the new AS-V Pro shoulder pads that they have become much more visibly protective than the previous AS1, with the foam caps and bright orange D3O foam displayed as the first line of protection. CCM’s not looking to hide those materials either; they want you to have the best protection, and they want you to know it too. In addition to the D3O and dual-core HD foam, the AS-V Pro now also has even tougher plastic shields over the sternum, spine, and biceps. With the Pro version, you can fully adjust the bicep shields to sit exactly where you want them to be.
Just like with the shoulder pads, CCM puts HD foam and D3O on both the inside and right on the front line of coverage. That bright orange cap is made completely of D3O, and coupled with the donut design along the inside, you won’t be feeling anything from that impact. And it’s not just foam protecting you here either—the new Tacks line is equipped with a tough shield over the forearm, in addition to D3O reinforcement in the Pro version. The ASD coverage encases a strong floating bicep guard made of EVA foam, meant to fit snugly to your arm while adapting to your arm movements.
The AS-V Pro shin guards use the same donut style with D3O in the middle of the kneecap to keep you as far away from the impact point as possible, and the calf Slash Shield has been upgraded further with more D3O inside and tough plastic over the outside. At the bottom where your skates come in contact with the pads, you will find an abrasion-resistant pad with D3O inside, which is ideal for battling against not just impact in that area, but also friction from skating multiple times in the week.
Tongues In/Out Shin Guard Liner
The AS1 was onto something with its adjustable liner, which was originally intended to accommodate your skates’ style and position. Now with the newly updated AS-V Pro, CCM has taken what they learned from the AS1 to make an even better, more comfortable, and highly adaptable pad. On the AS-V Pro, CCM integrated the liner into the shin guard with some revolutionary technology: a Tongues-In and Tongues-Out orientation. If you prefer to play with the tongues of your skates tucked under the guards, you can readjust the liner upward toward the kneecap; likewise, if a floppy tongue out of the shin guard is more your style, you can move the liner downward for increased coverage in that area.
To complete the protective collection, the pants set out to build on the success of the AS1 and Super Tacks series, applying the new Tacks focuses to their construction. The pants are made of premium materials across the board, including 400D nylon on the exterior, D3O in the hips and back, and HD and PE foam in the floating thigh caps. The main focal point of the pants’ design is in the max coverage ASD framework and Flexmotion wraparound protection. ASD ensures the pants keep you covered all game, and Flexmotion allows the gear to move with you during the play.
I chatted a bit with some of the guys here at The Hockey Shop who had the opportunity to trial the new AS-V Pro gear, and the Anatomical Shield Design coupled with Flexmotion in the build were huge selling points for them. Not only does the gear look comfortable and protective, but it feels and performs that way as well. The way they fit is meant to mold around your body like a second skin, and the gear does not disappoint. Overall, we’re pretty sure CCM hit the nail on the head with this one. Piqued your interest? Take a look at the collection here! You can also check out our take on the AS-V Pro glove review here.