Goalkeeper Glove Care
Check out this in-depth run down of how youth soccer goalkeepers, and even adults or professional goalkeepers, can take care of their goalkeeper gloves to get the longest use possible out of them!
Goalie Glove Rotation:
The best way to get the longest life for your gloves, whether they are youth soccer goalkeeper gloves or adult goalkeeper gloves, is by rotating the use of the gloves. Having a "practice pair" and a "game pair" of goalie gloves allows for less wear and tear on a consistent basis. The great thing about having the two pairs is that once a "game pair" of gk gloves become too worn to suffice as your main pair, you can transition them into your "practice pair" and continue the cycle!
The rotation of soccer goalie gloves doesn't always have to be between a "game pair" and a "practice pair". You can have certain pairs of goalie gloves that you prefer to wear in certain conditions. For example, our Locus Pro Aqua is designed to perform especially in wet conditions. These can be your soccer gloves you use when it's raining or when the field is a bit damp. Maybe you train on turf a lot? It may be better to use our Locus Pro or Locus Pro Blackout as opposed to our Pivot range of goalkeeper gloves. Our Pivot goalie gloves have a negative cut which naturally wears around the fingers more and the rough surface of the turf can lead to even more wear and tear. Think about your training and game conditions and what goalkeeper gloves will work best in those conditions.
Washing Goalkeeper Gloves:
No matter what conditions you are playing in, it is always important to wash your goalie gloves on a consistent basis. As a 9-year veteran professional goalkeeper, I wash my goalkeeper gloves after almost every training session. You may ask, why wash your gk gloves so often? I do this because I know how damaging dirt and other debris can be to the latex of the goalkeeper gloves. Whether it's youth goalie gloves or professional goalkeeper gloves, they need to get the utmost care. Now the question is, how do you wash your goalkeeper gloves?
There are a lot of articles out there that will tell you what temperature you should warm your water to and how many ounces of specifically made goalkeeper glove wash you should use; this article isn't one of them. Is goalie glove wash effective? Yes it is, but so are two hands and a bit of water and that saves you a bit of money. Does temperature matter? I won't say yes or no but what I will say is I've washed my goalie gloves in the shower with me after every training session for the past 4 years and they continue to work for me just fine. Whether it is a hot shower or a cold shower, my gk gloves go in with me and get their cleaning right alongside.
Keep it simple, goalie! You typically shower after a training session or game (well, hopefully) so take your goalkeeper gloves into the shower with you. Rinse the goalie gloves off and use your fingers to gently rub away any dirt or grass that is on the latex. You will quickly find that by doing this on a consistent basis, your gk gloves will maintain their fresh look a lot longer.
Drying Goalie Gloves:
There are a number of effective ways to dry your goalkeeper gloves. There are also a number of ways to avoid when drying your goalie gloves. A lot depends on preference and available drying time for your gk gloves. How do I dry my goalkeeper gloves you may ask? After our shower, I wring the gk gloves out to get rid of any excess water. I then hang the goalie gloves up by their straps and let them air dry for at least 24 hours. Timeframe greatly depends on how well you wring the gk gloves out and what area you hang the goalie gloves in. A damp area like a shower will take a little longer than a mud room.
Some youth and adult goalkeepers prefer the towel method to drying. When I want to dry my goalkeeper gloves faster, I typically wring them out and pat them dry with a towel. NOTE: I said PAT not RUB. I want to make that distinction because rubbing, especially with certain kinds of towels, can have a negative effect on the latex causing unwanted rips. After the goalie gloves have been patted dry, I wrap them in a towel and let them dry for a few hours. The towel tends to absorb whatever moisture is left in the goalkeeper gloves.
A few goalie glove drying methods to avoid:
-Roasting them over a fire (trust me, I've seen it)
-On top of a radiator
-Throwing them in the drying machine
-Using an oven
-Leaving them out in the sun
While all of these methods may be effective in the short run, long term they can have detrimental effects on your goalkeeper gloves.
Length of Soccer Glove Use:
How long will my goalkeeper gloves last? That's a good question, you tell me! Goalie glove life span has a lot to do with how you take care of your gk gloves. Everything we listed above plays a part in determining how long you can use your goalkeeper gloves. Quick rule of thumb for me: if I can feel the ball on my bare finger when I am catching then it is probably time to retire that pair of goalie gloves. Until then, PLAY ON!
Natural wear and tear and even little rips will happen because of varying goalkeeper techniques and surfaces played on. Especially at the youth goalkeeper age, goalie gloves tend to have varying life spans because goalkeepers haven't quite figured out their technique or how best to take care of their gk gloves.
Where you store your goalkeeper gloves in between practices and games can also affect how long they will last. Leaving your goalie gloves in your soccer bag will keep them dirty, damp, and will shorten the life span. Let your gk gloves breathe! Even if you aren't going to wash them, get them out of your bag and let them dry off in an appropriate area.
Check out all of our youth goalkeeper gloves and adult goalkeeper gloves on our goalie glove page. We have professional quality, affordable goalkeeper gloves to fit your needs!