Why do baseball players wear special pads for hitting?

The only mandated piece of equipment required for hitting is a protective helmet; all other pieces of protective equipment are optional. The two most common pieces of protective equipment are a shin guard on the inner leg of the lead leg and an elbow protector on the lead arm. A right-handed batter, for example, will wear a shin protector on the inner part of their left leg for protection from foul balls. A right-handed batter may also wear an elbow protector on their left arm to protect against wild pitches. Both of these protective pieces can be purchased at your local sporting goods store. (This answer provided for NATA by the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Education Program.)

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.