Taking care of your ‘KIT’

 

I would expect goalkeepers to respect and maintain the kit you wear – let it down and it will surely let you down also! Although there are many good articles on the internet to help, here are my tips to maximise the life of key components of your kit.

 

Gloves

 

1. Buy what is right for your game and the conditions you mainly play in. If conditions are more wet than dry make sure the glove is designed to meet those conditions.

11377118 10153283096889534 2649065101735141365 n2. While my sponsor has a range of gloves that covers all possibilities I would advise you to make sure that the gloves you buy are not just purchased to reflect your ‘favourite keeper’ or ‘brand name’ but ones that suit you and your game.

3. Keep the palms moist during use, this stops cracking and reduces wear.

4. Always clean after every use. Very important if you are using gloves with special latex grips similar to ones available from Reusch. Do not scrub as this can cause wear  especially on the palm side. Use only soap based cleaner such as fairy liquid, avoid strong cleaning chemicals.

5. Always dry slowly never with direct heat as this can cause cracking of the latex.

6. If you play or train on hard surfaces that can wear through the latex then consider having a different pair for grass or your competitive matches.

7. Better to have one size larger than fitting to tight. Again that will cause quicker wear especially at the finger tips.

 

Boots

 

1. Similar to gloves they should be cleaned after use.

2. CheckBoots when purchasing what the best method of cleaning is suitable for that make. Different materials will require either the use of ‘damp wipe’ for plastic or oils and polish for leather.

3. If possible, wear them in slightly before using in a game.

4. If blades or rubber studs avoid playing on concrete surface.

5. Again, boots should not be dried quickly or heated as this can cause ‘shiftiness’ to the material.

6. Regularly check laces as these will break easily. Good idea to carry spare set!

7. Always undo laces before taking off and especially putting them on. The firm heal section is there for a good reason and can be destroyed if incorrectly used.

 

Apparel

 

1. Shorts / Shirt & Socks make up for the other main parts of your kit – they probably are the first impression you will make on the opposition! Make sure it is a good one!

2. If you wear padded shirtApparel or shorts you will need to ensure the size is right for you and that the protected areas do not become a hindrance in your movements.

3. Correct size is important as to small or large will end up restricting your movements.

4. Wear the kit for your comfort rather than following trends of 'your GK hero', i.e. socks over the knees, too many goalkeepers, especilly youth, who follow these trends are constantly correcting/adjusting their kit during a match. Be yourself and dress for what works best for you.

4. The actions of a goalkeeper puts your apparel through a great deal of stressful wear, do not add to that stress on the material, avoid unnecessary pulling or stretching by the way you dress or undress.

5. Cleaning will depend on the type of material so ensure washing instructions are followed.

 

 

Tip: If things are going wrong in your game don’t blame your kit, it does not have a mine of its own – but you do!