For the casual hockey goalie, buying ice hockey goalie equipment can be a very frustrating process due to the costs associated with buying the protective equipment that you need to stand in the net and face slap shots from other ice hockey players. I think that it is a common misconception that goalie equipment is not good unless it is brand new.
This misconception could not be further from the truth.
Though I play defense in hockey now, I actually spent most of my years of youth hockey playing goal tender. While there were years where I would have brand new ice hockey goalie pads, most of my years of playing goalie saw me wearing used goalie equipment. A lot of times I would sport some pro return goalie equipment which was not only much cheaper than brand new gear, but also was of a high quality and came broken in the day that they were purchased. If I were still playing goalie today, I would definitely avoid buying brand new goalie gear and instead I would opt to buy used hockey goalie equipment.
The problem with preferring used goalie equipment is the fact that it can be hard to find good places to decent used goaltender gear. If you live in a large city that has a bit of a hockey background you might be able to find a hockey pro shop that sells new and used goaltender gear, but for those of us who do not live in towns with an abundance of ice hockey stores this is not necessarily an option. This is why the internet is so great, there are quite a few hockey equipment websites out there that sell new and used goalie equipment and the process of buying the new gear is usually relatively painless. Another great option is to visit auction or classifieds websites like Craigslist or Ebay where you can find a large amount of people looking to sell their old hockey goalie gear.
If you are hesitant to start playing goalie due to the horror stories you have heard about the cost of hockey goalie equipment, you should definitely consider researching and finding some quality used hockey equipment that is no more than a few years old. You will find that you can save hundreds of dollars by avoiding paying for the high priced brand new hockey goalie equipment and instead taking the used route which has more benefits than just a good price. The way I look at buying used goalie gear is that I basically am saving money to have someone else break in my goalie leg pads and my hockey goalie gloves.