So at my club we use the Muay Thai kick shields for practising our kicks, but we tend to destory them pretty quickly, they tend to develop holes in the middle.
I'm starting to think that front/side kicking them constantly is the reason for the quick degradation as the force of impact is concentracted tightly in one spot, as opposed to the something like a round house kick which has a larger impact area. For reference, we tend to replace pads after about a year. My questions are:
1) What's the normal 'life expectancy' for a kick sheild?
2) Is there some other equipment that is better designed for taking the impact of these kicks with small aras of impact (e.g. maegeri, yokogeri)?