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!!New Jan. 2021!! Overdrive once again fits all skates. I just received the new Overdrive blades for skates without a cowling. This is the finished version, and the improvement to mobility is a thing of beauty. When I first started working on these blades, I wasn't sure if Overdrive would help these skates all that much, but the diff is great. You need it. An install instructions link is here or in the menu to the left. I'll be adding more info in the next few weeks.

This means there are now 2 versions of Overdrive, the old version for skates with a cowling, one size fits all, and the new version for all skates without a cowling, one size fits all. To order either blade, it's the same price and the same button on the order page. But, be sure to tell me what skates you have and what blade you will need. I'll be checking when you order anyway. Below are my Bauer S27s with the new blade. Email me with any questions or to check on your skate model.


Overdrive=Mobility+Safety
Just as sharpened skates give you better mobility and safety; just as proper treads on your tires give you better mobility and safety.

Widening out is dangerous because the legs are made to swing forward and back, so moving against this natural motion creates repetitive stress points. Widening out for goaltenders is destructive to the knees, groin, hips, and back because the moves are done explosively and repetitively, tens of thousands of times a year. While giving you better mobility, Overdrive allows you to control your widening out, to reduce it, and often not even to use it by keeping you on your feet.

 

Left is Jonathan Quick's injury on Oct. 13/16 with his right leg booting out as he tries to push off. This would never have happened with Overdrive. Now LA has serious goalie problems, their season isin doubt, and an expensive goalie, one of the most exciting goalies in the game, is gone. He's had back surgery and groin problems, so this is definitely going to knock his game down a notch, permanently. Goalie injuries are usually the result of a build-up of strains and repetitive stress that often occur on a simple move. This boot-out isn't bad: not a lot of weight is on his right leg as it slides out because he is on his knees and the left knee is taking most of his weight, but this is the end of a long process with most of the damage having happened earlier. Overdrive prevents the cumulative wear and tear that leads to injuries like this.

Spring/17 update. He came back and looked good, but it was too late, which was too bad for the Kings, because it cost them their season and their coach. I loved watching the Kings in the playoffs, because, as Dustin Brown said, they are a team built for the playoffs. Other teams are thrilled they didn't make it, because the Kings would up their game hugely and become a very punishing team to play against. Beating the Kings in the playoffs meant you barely survived. Jonathan Quick is the heart of that team, we've seen this many times before, and despite a great effort by Budaj, a team cannot afford to lose such a player.

Here's Matt Murray's injury, spring/17. We'll see if it costs them in the playoffs, but Fleury seems to have regained his mojo. It's a simple move, not even a boot-out, just a warm-up butterfly slide, medium width. He's done this move a million times, and that's the problem. All pro goalies are working with a tight core, with many of them are on the edge of injury. And the more flexibility they have, the more likely they are to go down like this. They worked very hard to gain that flexibility, and it will cost them. The current style of goaltending places so much stress on the core that it can't help but get tired, then sore, then strained, and finally injured.

Murray's problem is that he's only in his second season, and that groin is not going back to its pre-injury state; it never does because other things were strained besides the groin. By the time an injury like this creeps up, the body has adjusted and compensated and can't do it any more. A sore groin can create tightness in the hips, which can cause a tight back, and so on, back and forth. I think that these innocent-looking injuries are worse because they've had time to grow roots, and the roots go deep. There is a lot of 'retro-fitting' required to fully get over such an injury; it requires a ton of work because of how muscles lock out and set like steel, especially up the psoas and around the spine, (I'll get to this on the 'Back' page), and since he's on contract, he'll have to do all of this recovery while he's back on the ice widening out all over again.

Left is a clip of Halak's injury, 2016-17, and again, it's a nothing play, When you get injured this easily, it means your core is wound up very tight. Actually, it's more like it has locked up, bit by bit, over the years, tightening like a vice until a move you easily did in your 20s becomes injury-worthy. Could Overdrive have helped Halak here? Not on this play, because it looks like he was so close to an injury, he could have done it getting out of a car. But Overdrive could have helped him before this by reducing the widening out that got him to the point that his entire career was in question.
Further to the Halak play above, what kind of plays got him to that point? Ones like this. It's King Henrik on a shootout, and I don't know what to call this move, but let's say it's a super-dangle - we've all fallen for it. The key is his right foot, which slides out until he has widened into a total split, which is something you don't want an over-30 franchise player King of New York doing too often. On top of that, he throws in a wicked twist at the end that torques his spine in a way that it definitely does not like. Overdrive would have prevented this by holding the right foot in place, or if you get totally fooled, by reducing the slide by a whole lot. You'll see goalies doing wicked widening-out like this on a lot of shootouts.
Here's another one, I have lots. This is an old one I never got around to posting. It's Curtis Sanford, and I don't know what happened to him, but this sure did. The video is not great, but the injury is almost exactly like Halak's, a kick save to the right and Boom! All of the above applies.

 

As for legality, nothing has changed, but Overdrive is not going away, at least not until the shape of the foot changes and goalies stop moving laterally.
(Why is this? Because when a goalie moves laterally, the ball of the foot is driven into the ice. This will never change.)

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